Seth Humeniuk seems too nice to be from New Jersey. The state is well-known for its attitude. Maybe it’s because he spends so much time in Philadelphia. After all, he cheers most for the Philadelphia sports teams.
He wasn’t as interested in sports early in life, but after each team, the Phillies, the Eagles, the Flyers, went further in their respective sports he began to love them. I asked him what he loved about sports, and he told me that it’s something real. He said he would like to do sports, but isn’t sure it’s something he could do. He plays hockey now, but it’s not something he says he’ll do long term. That’s the thing about Seth: he’s honest and utterly sincere about who he is and what he does.
I think part of this stems from his childhood. One of his earliest memories was his grandfather’s death. Seth was four, but he vividly remembers feeling optimistic that his grandfather would pull through, even as he visited him in his death bed. He passed later that night. Seth, in telling this, seemed still impacted by a memory so old but still so pressing.
He still carries with him this optimism, this belief that in spite of what may seem to be bad there can be found good. When I asked him about what he wanted people to say about him, he told me that he wanted to be described as someone who “isn’t afraid to do what’s right.” When I pressed him on this he gave me what I think is the most Seth answer possible:
“Culture is more obsessed with feeling good than doing good.”
Seth isn’t obsessed with feeling good. He is, after all, a Philadelphia sports fan. He is, however, interested in doing something good in the world. He’s only a sophomore in college, but he’s taken enough communication classes to know that communication is something he loves. When asked what he hoped to achieve with this passion, he thought for a long moment, as he did before answering every question, and told me about his dream of starting a news station.
I had expected some answer about working for ESPN or donning the Phillie Phanatic costume during home games.Instead he described his desire for a news station that presented the news completely and fairly without bias.
He must have noticed my reactionary skepticism, but he had me convinced by the end of his dream description. He admitted that it would be hard, maybe impossible. But Seth is always optimistic. He dreams of a news outlet that he says unlike Fox News,or any other station for that matter, would be “fair and balanced.”
If anybody could accomplish this, it would be Seth. He’s quiet, thoughtful, slow to speak. He’s not the kind to rush into a situation headfirst, but the kind to give honest thought and careful consideration. So if nothing else, I will remember him as someone who isn’t afraid to do what’s right.