I write this with great grief knowing that our coach and beloved family leader Joe Paterno has passed away after 85 years.
Joe was a legend that many feel was unjustly fired by the Board of Trustees due to a very hurtful series of events at Penn State. I think the board acted blindly and inappropriately in firing one of the greatest college football coaches of all time (and possibly never to be overshadowed in the future).
Joe and Sue Paterno donated tremendous amounts of time, money and attention to State College and Penn State for well over 60 years - a library, Special Olympics, monetary donations each year, the expansion of Beaver Stadium and the rise of PSU to a national powerhouse in academics and football.
Joe did not require outlandish salaries, as other much younger coaches across the country insisted.
Lenny Moore, former PSU player and NFL player spoke about Paterno best, saying, "JoePa is Penn State" and "[Joe] invested in the university."
Joe Paterno expressed his steadfast loyalty to Penn State after his 400th win, saying, "look around, look around ... I stayed here because I love you all."
Rest in peace, Mr. Paterno.
A gentleman, a friend, a mentor of men, a community leader, and The Legend that will live on forever with true Penn State fans - We Are Penn State - the spirit of JoePa and the kindheartedness of Sue Paterno are Penn State.
I suggest the Board of Trustees and Penn State University do a few things to right their wrongs of recent months. They say Joe Paterno didn't fill his "moral" obligations. I say the Trustees need to fill their honorable obligations, such as:
Rename the stadium immediately to "Paterno Stadium" or "Joe Paterno Stadium" and move the "Beaver" name to another structure at University Park.
Board of Trustees, all of you: Remove yourself and turn over all control to a completely newly elected board - all Penn State alumni based.
Scott W. Sipple
Board should fulfill its obligation
My heart, prayers and admiration go out to the entire Paterno family.
We have lost a great person. Although I have never met him, I could just tell by seeing and hearing him that he was special.
He cared for everybody and not just his team. Win or lose, he always praised his team. He treated all people equal. Joe got a real stab in the back when the Board of Trustees voted to fire him for "not fulfilling his obligation."
Wasn't going to the campus police fulfilling his obligation? The trustees treated him like a criminal, and it is now time they admit they screwed up. If they can't admit they screwed up, they should all be fired.
It seems to me they all acted on impulse before all the facts were even known, and it is doubtful if they will ever be known even after the Sandusky trial.
If Sandusky is proven innocent, then how will the trustees wiggle out of the firing of JoePa?
The trustees did a real disservice to Penn State when they fired Joe but gave others, supposedly involved, nothing but a paid leave of absence. It is time for a change of trustees. Hopefully their decision will haunt them as long as they live.
This group of trustees doesn't seem to think anything about real people. All they care about is their own greed. How much have they given back to Penn State?
Joe did more for Penn State than the whole board put together. The board could give one big gift - resign.
Paterno deserved better fate
On Nov. 9, 2011, the Pennsylvania State University Board of Trustees put the university into cardiac arrest when the decision was made to fire legendary coach Joe Paterno.
At 9:25 a.m., on Jan 22, 2012, the heart of the Pennsylvania State University stopped beating.
Joe Paterno lived for Penn State, and when Penn State turned its back on him, it was more than he could bear.
Joe Paterno wasn't just a football coach. Football wasn't Paterno's first priority. Penn State was Paterno's No. 1 priority. Coach Paterno's contribution to building Penn State into one of the nation's great universities, both athletically and academically, is immeasurable.
It is only with the benefit of hindsight that it is clear that Paterno could have done more in reporting the allegations against Jerry Sandusky. It is easy to sit back now, with all the available information, and pass judgment on the Sandusky situation.
Remember at the time there was one very, very serious allegation against a man that coach Paterno knew and trusted for years - a man that Coach Paterno considered a close friend as well as a fellow coach.
Put yourself in a similar situation: Not blessed with the knowledge we now have, ask yourself what you would do if faced with the same circumstances - one single allegation against a friend and fellow coach, an allegation that could scar a person's reputation, even if not true, for life.
If you are honest with yourself, you know that Coach Paterno did exactly what most of us would have done considering the information he had at the time. Sure in hindsight, it is obvious that there should have been more done, not only by Coach Paterno, but by many others, but that only makes him guilty of being human. It certainly should not have cost him his job, his legacy and his life.
The Board of Trustees made a knee-jerk decision when faced with a crisis - a weak, thoughtless, self- serving decision. They panicked, and it cost a great man his job, his reputation, his life, and his legacy and it further scarred a university that was already marred by the Sandusky scandal.
If the Board of Trustees wants to restart the heart of Penn State, members need to step down and Penn State needs to honor Joe Paterno and recognize his significant contribution to the university and to the thousands of students and athletes he positively influenced.
John R. Lloyd Jr.
Franco has the right idea
I am currently on duty with my military unit in South America, and I back Franco Harris in his support for Joe Paterno.
Why couldn't the board let him retire at the end of the season instead of treating him unfairly and firing him for something he had nothing to to with?
The board needs to separate the two: Sandusky allegedly committed a crime, not Paterno.
If Joe took his concerns to the head of the police and they did nothing about it then he did what he had to do. He did not witness the act. He went by what he was told.
How does the board feel that they can honor Joe in any way after they publicly blamed him for not acting in the best interest of the university? After 61 years of dedicated service and how many millions of dollars donated, you get thanked by getting kicked to the curb.
Shame on the board, and we the fans will back JoePa and hope that they do not take down his statue. Keep on talking, Franco, and maybe final the insanity will stop, and Joe will get the recognition he deserves.
Rudel writing 'insensitive'
In the wake of Joe Paterno's passing, the front page article written by Neil Rudel last Monday was unconscionable.
As the Paterno family and the PA community mourn the loss of this great man and role model, Neil displays his insensitivity by beginning his article with negative reflections (using Bobby Bowden's comment, according to Paterno, that after retirement "there's only one big event left") rather than noting the significant impact this man has had on Penn State and many young adults, not to mention the philanthropy that he has returned to Happy Valley and beyond.
There is a time and place to discuss the other unfortunate issues. In the wake of such a fine man's passing is not the time. Rudel should be ashamed of himself.
Giger's views not appreciated
Cory Giger does not speak for me or anyone else I know when it comes to the recent tragic events involving Penn State in general and Joe Paterno in particular.
When ESPN wasn't reporting the news, they were making the news, and Giger was only too happy to make himself available.
I'm sure ESPN thought it perfectly accommodating that Giger, a "local," was so willing to throw Paterno under the bus. He did it time after time, pretending to be a local voice which added credibility to ESPN's full assault on Joe.
He is not a local voice. He is from the South.
He is an outsider when it comes to anything Penn State, and for him to pretend to have the pulse of the true Penn State family, our feelings for the Board of Trustees at this point, our reverence for Coach Paterno, our love of the university that so many of us call our alma mater, our respect for graduation rates, our love of players past and present and the joy they brought us in good times and bad and the consistency of the Penn State message is the worst type of self-promotion one can display.
Of all the choices of TV satellite trucks on campus to turn over, does anyone think the students didn't target the WTAJ truck because of the venom Giger was spewing? Cory's 15 minutes are up.