The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

April 25, 2013

Speaking about dreams: Triangle members, guests hear from former pro baseballer

ENID, Okla. — Jim Morris, whose Cinderella story inspired the Disney blockbuster “The Rookie,” spoke about dreams to the members and guests of Triangle Cooperative Service Co. Thursday.

Morris’ dream was to be a professional baseball player. In 1983, he was drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers. He left the team four years later after developing shoulder problems, finished college and became a teacher and baseball coach.

“Everybody has a dream,” Morris said. “Baseball was mine. It got me out of the house.”

Everybody also has dream killers and dream makers in their life, Morris said.

“My father was my dream killer,” Morris said. “His favorite saying to me as a child was, ‘Children are meant to be seen and not heard.’ I heard that every day.”

He encountered other dream killers along the way, like his high school counselor who told him he was not smart enough to go to college.

But the high schoolers he later coached were dream makers. They challenged him that if they won the playoffs, he must try out for a Major League team.

Determined to keep his promise to his high school players, he did try out — and made it.

“Baseball was a learning tool,” Morris said. “God gave me baseball to teach me other things. … I would not change one thing about my journey, because that’s what made me who I was.”

Thursday’s meeting was Triangle’s 97th annual meeting. Besides the annual business meeting, the event included an agribusiness industry trade show with more than 30 vendors and a barbecue luncheon.

Mandy Cross, treasurer, CFO and vice president, told members the last year was a profitable one for the company.

Assets are more than $8 million more than a year ago.

The company currently is being audited by the IRS, Cross said.

“The IRS has its position, and Triangle has its position, which is being defended by the best tax attorneys in the country,” Cross said.

Ed Ford, a 20-year member of the board of directors for Farmers Cooperative Association in Perry, and Gene Warnock, manager of Farmers Grain Company at Kremlin for 40 years, were given Triangle’s Lifetime Achievement awards for their dedication to the cooperative system throughout their lives. Both were on Triangle’s board of directors for many years, during the time Triangle Insurance Co. was formed.

Each received a plaque and gift certificate, and their names were added to a plaque in the company’s home office.

Triangle Cooperative Service Co. was founded in 1916 by 20 Oklahoma cooperative grain elevators, and has since grown to offer regional insurance and value-added services to more than 380 members in a nine-state area. Several subsidiaries have formed, including Triangle Insurance Co., TCSC Insurance Agency and ProValue LLC. Triangle Insurance operates in 14 states, specializing in commercial agri-business and related insurance products.

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