Right before the Bengals lost in the final seconds to the Cardinals back in Week 5, Jeff Lanham made a promise inside of his bar in Milan, Indiana. He vowed to stay on the roof of his own establishment until the Bengals won a football game.
57 days later, it finally happened.
Lanham and his family spent Thanksgiving inside of his makeshift shelter, where he has spent an entire eight weeks residing in. Just a few days later, the Bengals routed the poor Jets and won their first game of the 2019 season and their first regular season win since Week 15 of last season.
The wait was long, much longer than Lanham expected it to be.
“No I never thought ever that I'd be up there for 57 days,” Lanham told Local 12 reporter Christian Hauser.
The two month-long experience was obviously not planned, but Lanham kept his word and was relieved to join his friends and family down from the roof.
“Oh it was awesome.” Explained Lanham. “Just to be off the roof I'm glad, I don't feel like I'm like in prison now I can do whatever I want. Before it was just bathroom breaks, that's it!”
Lanham isn’t the first Bengals fan to do something like this. During the 1991 season, former Cincinnati radio reporter Dennis “Wildman” Walker spent 61 days inside a billboard advertising his own radio station of WEBN, waiting for a Bengals victory. Lanham was four days short of the record, but he doesn’t mind.
“He still has the record. I wasn’t set out for no beating ‘Wildman’ Walker’s record he can have the title, I just said something I shouldn’t have said and that he words and own up to it.”
Lanham even received a call from Walker, congratulating him on his own perseverance and telling him to “come on down” like Bob Barker on the The Price is Right.
The 57-day journey has reached national media and given the small town of Milan, Indiana some time in the spotlight. But don’t expect Lanham to end up back on his roof for any more Bengals droughts.
“No... no. There will be no more comments ever made like that.”