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The Sonny Melendrez Show

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Hosted by award-winning speaker, Hall of Fame radio/TV host and author, Sonny Melendrez, each show is filled to the brim with inspiration and entertainment through storytelling, fascinating guests, live performances, exclusive celebrity interviews and all delivered with unstoppable enthusiasm!

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Feb 24, 2019

At 91, you would think that Texas icon, Red McCombs has nothing else to prove. After all, he has built one the country’s biggest automotive companies, brought the Spurs to San Antonio and, along with Charline, his loving wife of 68 years, has donated more than $130 million to Texas schools, research institutions and non-profits.

Think again.

Red wakes up with the enthusiasm of those who are decades younger.

“The fact that God has allowed me another day is the greatest gift that I can receive. What we do with this gift to make a difference is what is pleasing to Him,” he gratefully shares.

During my recent visit to Red’s office, filled with photographs, statues, paintings, awards and memorabilia, he recalled being asked by then governor, John Connolly to spearhead San Antonio’s world’s fair – Hemisfair 68.
One of his biggest challenges was securing national sponsorships for all the fair’s exhibits.

“And, I found out very quickly that I couldn’t get access. All that we were feeling so strongly about didn’t mean anything to the Fortune 500 group. I mean zero!”

It was then that he became determined to find a way to get national recognition for our “little city with a river running through it.”

That break came in the form of the American Basketball Association, “which was broke and nobody wanted to look at it.”

“The mayor of Dallas said that he would give it to me if I would just do something with it because they were playing to about 250 people at the time!”

The transaction took place and, “I knew we had our work cut out for us.”
It was 1973 and the acquisition of the Dallas / Texas Chaparrals, gave birth to the San Antonio Spurs, eventually leading to entrance into the NBA, 3 short years later.

The rest is history written in silver and black.

McCombs is quick to point out that while many think of him as a sports jock, this wasn’t his main reason for setting out to bring a major league sports team to the Alamo City.

“More than anything, I wanted San Antonio to be identified with the LAs, with the New Yorks and with the Philadelphias. And, we did it.”

Perhaps, Red’s secret for continuing to live a long and fulfilling life is his curiosity of what opportunity to serve each day will bring.

“I’ve learned a thing or two over the years, sometimes the hard way, but if my advice can help a few other folks build their business and give back to their community, I am happy to share.”

~Sonny Melendrez

Find out more about Red McCombs here: