By Phil Batson
When Joe Bostic went to Clemson and played football for the Tigers, there were three people that “meant the world to me.”
One was Clemson’s academic counselor, the late Col. Rick Robbins.
Another was Herman McGee, the longtime Tiger trainer and equipment manager who passed away in the late 70s.
The third was Harold “Mac” McKeown of the renowned “Mac’s Drive-In” restaurant in Pendleton.
“Mac is truly an example of a gentleman,” Bostic said recently at a dinner at the IPTAY/Ticket Office recognizing the Bostic Brothers Construction company of Raleigh, NC for their IPTAY Endowment in honor of McKeown.
The Bostics came to Clemson from Greensboro, NC. Bostic was a two-time All-American offensive guard for the Tigers (’77-’78) and was inducted into Clemson’s Hall of Fame in 1996. His brother Jeff, who played center and guard for the Tigers from 1977-79, was inducted in 1997.
Both played professional football in the NFL. Joe played from 1979-88 with the St. Louis cardinals, while Jeff played 14 years with the Washington Redskins.
Their business partner, Mel Morris, was also recognized.
“I’m so glad to have the good fortune to be able to do something for Mac,” Joe said. “He is truly one of the nicest people I’ve ever met.
“I’ve never seen him in a bad mood. The man is the real deal. I think the world of him.”
Jeff echoed his brother’s sentiments. Mac left an “indelible impression” on Jeff. “No person at Clemson has changed more lives than Mac. Unfortunately, there are not more people like Mac in our society today.”
He added that Mac’s Drive-In has been open more than 45 years.
“Every time you go in to see Mac, he’s never any different. It’s an opportunity to go in Mac’s and enjoy the same hospitality that’s always been there. How refreshing that is.”
Among those attending the dinner were former head coach Danny Ford, former Athletic Director Bill McLellan and a former teammate of the Bostics, Steve Kinney.
“A near and dear friend of mine is Bill McLellan,” Joe said. “When he was at Clemson during my playing days, we were given every opportunity to succeed. Mr. McLellan, I want to thank you for that.”
Jeff also expressed appreciation for what Clemson had meant to him. “I’m 42-years-old and I spent less than ten percent of that time at Clemson. How could such a small part of your life make such a big impact?
“This is a bigger part than anything I did in Washington for 14 years.”
The Bostics’ Endowment honors McKeown “for his kind heart and delicious cheeseburgers.”
Long noted as a man of few words, McKeown still was obviously touched by the honor. “You don’t know how much I appreciate this,” he said. “I am humbled and honored.”
March 21, 2019