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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Jeffrey Prugh---AKA Jeff Prugh

    Born: September 15, 1939, Pittsburgh, PA
    Died: August 8, 2009, Chattanooga, TN, age 69,---d. colorectal cancer

    Los Angeles sports writer;
    Dormont, PA, 6-month year old, (April, 1940 census)
    Graduated Hoover HS (Glendale, CA), 1957
    Attended Glendale Community College,
    Graduated University of Missouri-Columbia, 1962 (Bachelor's degree, journalism)
    Glendale News Press, copy editor / reporter
    Los Angeles Times, sports writer, 1962 - 1981
    Glendale News Press, executive editor
    Burbank Leader,
    Football Leader
    Marin Independent Journal, editorial page editor, 1994 - 2001

    Father: Harold, born Ohio, 1908?; Mother: Janice Fryer, born Ohio, 1914?;

    Jeff Prugh, a former Times sportswriter and national correspondent who was a coauthor of books on UCLA's basketball dynasty and a controversial murder case in Atlanta, has died. He was 69. Prugh died Saturday in Chattanooga, Tenn., of cancer, said his brother, Vince Prugh. Prugh worked for the Times from 1962 to 1981. His sports assignments included UCLA basketball, the Dodgers and college football. With fellow Times staff writer Dwight Chapin, Prugh wrote "The Wizard of Westwood: Coach John Wooden and His UCLA Bruins," which documented the rise of the basketball program under Wooden.
    ---------------------
    Los Angeles Times' obituary, August 11, 2009, Keith Thursby
    Jeff Prugh dies at 69; former Times sportswriter was coauthor of several books

    Jeff Prugh, a former Times sportswriter and national correspondent who was a coauthor of books on UCLA's basketball dynasty and a controversial murder case in Atlanta, has died. He was 69.

    Prugh died Saturday in Chattanooga, Tenn., of cancer, said his brother, Vince Prugh.

    Prugh worked for the Times from 1962 to 1981. His sports assignments included UCLA basketball, the Dodgers and college football. With fellow Times staff writer Dwight Chapin, Prugh wrote "The Wizard of Westwood: Coach John Wooden and His UCLA Bruins," which documented the rise of the basketball program under Wooden.

    The Wooden book, published in 1973, was an "unusual collaboration," Chapin said Monday. Chapin was going to write it but when he was assigned to the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, Germany, he asked Prugh to team with him. "We never had a problem; it was a very smooth collaboration," he said. "Jeff became a close friend."

    Prugh was born Sept. 15, 1939, in Pittsburgh to Harold and Janice Fryer Prugh. The family moved to Carter Lake, Iowa, in 1944 and Glendale in 1950.

    Prugh graduated from Hoover High School in Glendale in 1957, attended what is now Glendale Community College and graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1962 with a bachelor's degree in journalism. He worked at the Glendale News Press as a copy editor and reporter before joining The Times as a sportswriter. In 1976, he moved to Atlanta to become the paper's bureau chief.

    In 1984, Prugh wrote "The List" with Chet Dettlinger, which criticized police work and media coverage about a series of Atlanta black youths who were killed between 1979 and 1981.

    "He was meticulous, tireless. He was always looking behind that other door," said former ABC-TV reporter Bob Sirkin, who met Prugh in Atlanta. Prugh later worked for ABC as an off-air investigative reporter, Sirkin said.

    Prugh returned to The Times as a reporter in the early 1990s. He also was executive editor of the News Press, the Burbank Leader and the Foothill Leader and editorial page editor of the Marin Independent Journal. He wrote a biography of college and pro football star Herschel Walker.

    Vince Prugh said his brother had completed a book about the Birmingham, Ala., church bombings in 1963, titled "American Whitewash," before becoming ill.

    Prugh's brother is his only immediate survivor. Instead of flowers, the family asked that donations be made to the American Cancer Society. No services are planned.
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 09-18-2013, 07:06 AM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Robert Edward Shafer---AKA Bob Shafer

    Born: August 27, 1925, Akron, OH
    Died: July 10, 2013, Simi Valley, CA, age 87,---d. Alzheimer's disease

    Pasadena sports writer;
    Akron Beacon Journal (OH),
    Pasadena Star-News, sports writer,
    Santa Monica Outlook,
    Los Angeles Daily News,

    San Gabriel Valley Tribune obituary, July 24, 2013, by Kevin Modesti
    Sportswriter and editor Bob Shafer dies at 87

    Bob Shafer, a versatile and popular sportswriter and editor in a long career with the Pasadena Star-News, Santa Monica Outlook and Los Angeles Daily News, died July 10, 2013, in Simi Valley.

    He was 87 and had Alzheimer's disease.

    Shafer discovered his talent for writing in high school and started in newspapers in his hometown with the Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal. He went on to cover virtually every sport, but by time he retired in 1989 after more than a decade with the Daily News, he was best known for his columns about auto racing and hunting and fishing.

    "He loved covering the Rose Bowl and the Indianapolis 500," said Becky Counts, Shafer's daughter.

    In one of his last outdoors-sports columns for the Daily News, Shafer mused about the frustrations of fishing: "You have to figure this whole game is fraught with contradictions. Fishing is supposed to be a wonderfully relaxing endeavor. But show me the angler who is satisfied sitting around a lake all day without experiencing one strike. That's relaxing? No way."

    Shafer was recalled fondly by former Daily News colleagues.

    "His staff consisted largely of journalists in their 20s," baseball writer John Lowe said by e-mail Wednesday. "I never heard Bob speaking to any of us in a scolding or bossy way. He treated us with respect and sought our judgment, even though on some nights he must have had more experience than everyone else in the office ... combined.

    "He was a model for all of us on how to stay cool and have a sense of humor amid the nightly pressures of deadline."

    Shafer, who spent his retirement in Alabama and Simi Valley, is survived by his wife of 67 years, Jeanne; two daughters, five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

    A service will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, July 25, 2013, at Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church, 4191 Cochran St., Simi Valley.
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 09-18-2013, 06:40 AM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Linda G. DeBruin---AKA Lynn DeBruin

    Born: April 8, 1962
    Died: September 7, 2013, Denver, CO, age 51,---d. in a Denver hospice of cancer

    Associated Press sports writer;
    Associated Press (Salt Lake City office), 2010 - 2013

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Lynn DeBruin, who worked for The Associated Press covering sports since 2010 and had been a writer with the Rocky Mountain News and the East Valley Tribune, has died. She was 51.

    DeBruin died in a Denver hospice early Saturday, said her sister, Linda Luther-Veno, who was present along with friends. DeBruin had been battling cancer.

    DeBruin joined the AP in 2010 to cover the Jazz, college athletics and winter sports in Utah. She reported on the surprise resignation of Utah Jazz coach Jerry Sloan in 2011 after 1,127 wins. She was the lead reporter for the AP when Brigham Young University made its run to the Sweet 16 behind rising star Jimmer Fredette.

    Her professional career also included coverage of the World Series, six Super Bowls and golf's majors. She spent 10 years as an NFL beat writer, first in Arizona, then with the Broncos for John Elway's final Super Bowl.

    "Lynn was a tenacious journalist who made us all strive to be better, especially as she fought with such courage and strength over the past several months," said Lou Ferrara, AP's managing editor for sports and entertainment. "Our thoughts are with her family and her many friends and colleagues."

    Luther-Veno said DeBruin's passions included travel and photography. She also was an avid golfer.

    Luther-Veno said memorial services will be held in Denver and in DeBruin's native Pennsylvania.

    Along with Luther-Veno, DeBruin is survived by her mother, Mary Luther, and a brother, Stephen Luther.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Robert Maclay Oates

    Born: May 20, 1915, Aberdeen, SD
    Died: April 27, 2009, Los Angeles, CA, age 93

    Los Angles sports writer;
    Aberdeen, SD, 4-year old, (January 15, 1920 census)
    Buffalo, SD, 5-year old, (April 11, 1930 census)
    Los Angeles, CA, reporter, newspaper, (April 6, 1940 census)(listed Robert M. Oates, North Dakota)
    Los Angeles Herald Examiner, sports writer, 1962 - 1968
    Los Angeles Times, sports writer, 1968 - 1995 (continued to write football columns for the paper and its website on a freelance basis until January 2007.)

    Father: William, born Wisconsin, 1883?; Mother: Idah, born Illinois, 1890?;

    Bob Oates, longtime L.A. sportswriter, dies at 93
    Bob Oates, a longtime sportswriter for The Times who covered 39 consecutive Super Bowls, died Monday at his home in Baldwin Hills of age-related causes, said his son, Bob Jr.. He was 93.

    Oates, who also worked for other Los Angeles newspapers, was the last surviving original member of the panel of sportswriters that since 1962 has annually chosen the inductees for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

    "Even right up to the last meeting he attended, he was as informed and prepared as the first meeting," Joe Horrigan, vice president of communications for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, said Tuesday. "It was a pleasure to have him in the room. He was the grand old man. He had a soft voice, but everyone listened and paid attention."

    Known as an analytical writer who focused on the Xs and O's of the game, Oates began his streak of covering the Super Bowl with the first one, played at the Coliseum in 1967. He worked each successive one through Super Bowl XXXIX on Feb. 6, 2005, and the Hall of Fame selection meeting the day before.

    In 2006, when he was 90, he missed Super Bowl XL to stay home with his wife, Marnie, who had suffered a fall a few months earlier. She died in February 2006. Oates never attended another Super Bowl.

    Only four sportswriters have covered every Super Bowl: Jerry Green of the Detroit News; Jerry Izenberg of the Newark Star-Ledger; Dave Klein, a former Star-Ledger reporter who had moved on to a pro football newsletter; and Edwin Pope of the Miami Herald.

    The National Football League arrived in Los Angeles in 1946, when the Cleveland Rams moved west to play in the Coliseum, but Oates had been covering big-time football in Los Angeles since 1939.

    His beat at the Hearst Corp.'s Examiner included USC and UCLA, teams that in those days were more popular than the NFL, and the minor league Los Angeles Bulldogs and Hollywood Bears.

    Once the Rams showed up, he covered the NFL for the rest of his career, joining the Herald Examiner in 1962, when Hearst merged its morning and afternoon papers, and then to The Times in 1968.

    "He loved the business, and he was the kind of writer who was fascinated by game strategy," columnist Bill Dwyre, The Times' former longtime sports editor, said Tuesday. "He was part sportswriter and part coach."

    Oates received the Dick McCann Memorial Award in 1974 from the Pro Football Writers of America, recognizing long and distinguished reporting.

    During football off-seasons, Oates wrote general-assignment sports stories on a broad range of subjects.

    When the Rams pulled up stakes and moved to St. Louis in 1995 and the Raiders returned to Oakland that same year after 13 seasons in Los Angeles, Oates continued to write about the NFL from a national perspective.

    He retired from his full-time position at The Times in 1995 but continued to write football columns for the paper and its website on a freelance basis until January 2007.

    He wrote two football books, and in 1996 published "Sixty Years of Winners: A Sportswriter's Look at Champions of the Century."

    Robert Maclay Oates was born May 20, 1915, in Aberdeen, S.D., one of four sons of William Maclay Oates, an administrator at what is now called Northern State University, and his wife, the former Idah Armstrong.

    According to his 1996 memoir, Oates was a voracious reader of newspapers as a child. He published his own weekly while in high school and worked for a daily newspaper while attending Yankton College in South Dakota.

    There he met his future wife, and, after graduation in 1937, they married and moved to Los Angeles. They had two sons, Bob Jr., a writer, and Steve, a dentist who died in 2003.

    Oates served in the Army during World War II, staying stateside because of poor vision, and earned a master's degree in journalism at UCLA.

    Besides his son, he is survived by two brothers and two grandchildren.

    Services are pending.

    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 08-29-2013, 05:38 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Daniel A. Knobler---AKA Danny Knobler

    Born: June 26, 1961, Columbus, OH
    Died: Still Alive

    Detroit sports writer;
    Detroit sports writer, 1970-2011
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 09-22-2013, 12:27 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Jon Paul Morosi

    Born: 1982, Michigan
    Died: Still alive

    Detroit sports writer;
    Bay City Times (MI),
    Seattle Post-Intelligener, sports writer,

    Jon Paul Morosi is a National MLB Writer for FOXSports.com. He previously covered baseball for the Detroit Free Press and Seattle Post-Intelligencer. He began his journalism career at the Bay City Times in his native Michigan
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 08-27-2013, 07:05 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Lynn Ghen Henning

    Born: July 8, 1952, St. Johns, MI
    Died: Still Alive

    Detroit sports writer;
    Graduated Michigan State University (East Lansing, MI), 1974, (journalism)
    Lansing State Journal (Lansing, MI), 1976 - 1979
    Detroit News, 1979 - ?

    Lynn Henning joined The Detroit News sports staff in 1979 after 3½ years as a sports writer and columnist for the Lansing State Journal. A lifelong Michigan native (St. Johns) and a 1974 journalism graduate from Michigan State, Henning has specialized through the years in covering baseball, as well as Michigan and Michigan State, Lions and Red Wings, and in writing about the outdoors. Henning spent seven years during the 1990s as editor of PGA Magazine and as a writer for the national weekly, Golfweek.

    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 10-20-2013, 03:16 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Tom Gage

    Born:
    Died: Still Alive

    Detroit sports writer;
    Graduated Grosse Pointe University HS,
    Graduated Washington and Lee,
    Detroit News, sports writer,

    Tom Gage, the Tigers beat writer for The Detroit News, graduated from Grosse Pointe University High School and Washington and Lee. Before joining The News, Tom worked for the New Orleans Times-Picayune in news and sports. Tom plays golf occasionally, and pursues his interest in American history during frequent airport delays.

    Tom can be reached at [email protected].
    http://www.detroitnews.com/section/O...#ixzz2dDSvhkz7
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 08-27-2013, 07:05 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    John Lowe

    Born:
    Died: Still alive

    Detroit sports writer;
    Graduated University of Southern California (USC),
    Detroit Free Press, sports writer, May, 1986

    John Lowe has been a sports writer since 1979, and a baseball writer for the Free Press since 1986. He has covered 143 World Series games, including 121 in a row at one time. He has covered 28 All-Star Games.

    He has covered Fernando Valenzuela's 8-0, shutout-filled launch as a rookie with the '81 Dodgers, Nolan Ryan's fifth no-hitter (which broke the all-time record held by Sandy Koufax), Kirk Gibson's and Joe Carter's epic World Series homers, Cal Ripken's shattering of Lou Gehrig's consecutive-games mark, the Sammy Sosa-Mark McGwire homer chase and Barry Bonds' chase of the McGwire record. He did columns on Ted Willliams, Joe DiMaggio, Harry Caray and Jack Buck when they departed the scene. (Caray and Buck were the Cardinals announcers when Lowe first heard baseball on the radio -- it was like having Williams and DiMaggio in the same lineup.)

    After working part-time in Long Beach, Calif., Lowe began his full-time career with the Los Angeles Daily News in 1979. He covered the Los Angeles Dodgers from 1981 through May 1984, when he took a job at the Philadelphia Inquirer. In Philly, Lowe served as the national NBA writer and then the national NHL writer. In May 1986, he became the Tigers beat writer for the Detroit Free Press, which as you can see from the above, also sends Lowe to big events.

    Lowe remains indebted to many of the top journalists in the country who took an interest in him when he was young and taught him how to cover the game. His foremost mentor was Tracy Ringolsby, whom Lowe realized was a Hall of Famer long before Ringolsby received that honor in 2006. Lowe also continues to profit every day from what he learned from a pair of Hall of Famers: broadcaster Vin Scully and baseball writer Peter Gammons. And as a young writer on the Dodgers beat, Lowe received invaluable training from veteran writer Gordon Verrell.

    Lowe is honored that so many top managers have spent hours teaching him the game, starting with Whitey Herzog, Bobby Cox, Chuck Tanner, Tony La Russa and Tom Kelly. Sparky Anderson and Jim Leyland already had spent a lot of time with Lowe before he got to cover them in their terms as Tigers manager. He has enjoyed how those two continually work big-picture perspective and insight into their daily briefings with the media.

    Lowe graduated from USC. But his goal is never to graduate in baseball. He wants to remain a lifetime student in a game where there is so much to learn and where so many people teach it so well.

    Contact JOHN LOWE: 313-223-4053 or [email protected]. Check out his Tigers blog at www.freep.com/sports.
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 08-27-2013, 07:04 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Jerry Green

    Born: 1928?
    Died: Still alive

    Detroit sports writer;
    Associated Press, sports writer, 1956 - 1963
    Detroit News, sports writer, 1963 - 2004

    Wikipedia
    Jerry Green (writer)
    Jerry Green is an American sports journalist and author. He was a staff writer for the Associated Press from 1956 to 1963 and for The Detroit News from 1963 to 2004. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2005 and the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame in 2003. He is one of four sports writers to cover each of the first 45 Super Bowls from 1967 to 2011.

    Reporter
    Green was a sports writer for the Associated Press from 1956 to 1963. He was hired by The Detroit News in 1963. He was a staff sports writer for The Detroit News for 41 years from 1963 until his retirement in 2004. He covered baseball, football, basketball, hockey, and other sports for the paper. Having also covered the 1957 Detroit Lions as a young reporter with the Associated Press, Green lays claim to being "the last surviving Detroit sportswriter who covered the Tigers, Red Wings, Pistons and Lions championships".

    Even after his retirement, Green has continued to contribute columns and to cover the Super Bowl for The Detroit News. He is one of four sports writers to cover every Super Bowl from Super Bowl I in 1967 through Super Bowl XLV in 2011.

    Author
    Green has published several books, including histories of the Super Bowl, the Detroit Lions, the Detroit Pistons, and Michigan Wolverines football, as well as single-season books on the 1968 Detroit Tigers World Series championship team and the 1998 Denver Broncos Super Bowl championship team.

    Authored
    "Year of the Tiger: The Diary of Detroit's World Champions," Jerry Green (Coward-McCann, 1969)
    "Detroit Lions," Jerry Green (Macmillan, 1973)
    "The Detroit Pistons: Capturing a Remarkable Era," Jerry Green (Bonus Books, 1991)
    "Super Bowl Chronicles: A Sportswriter Reflects on the First 30 Years of America's Game," Jerry Green (Masters Press, 1995)
    "Greatest Moments in Detroit Red Wings history," Joe Falls, Jerry Green, Vartan Kupelian (Masters Press, 1997)
    "Mile High Miracle: Elway and the Broncos, Super Bowl Champions at Last," Jerry Green (Masters Press, 1999)
    "They Earned Their Stripes: The Detroit Tigers' All-Time Team," Detroit News (Sports Publishing LLC, 2001)
    "University of Michigan Football Vault: The History of the Wolverines," Jerry Green (Whitman Pub Llc, 2008)

    Awards
    During his career with The Detroit News, Green was voted Michigan's Sportswriter of the Year 10 times by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. He was inducted into the "writer's wing" of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2005 as the recipient of the Dick McCann Memorial Award. He was also inducted into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame in 2003, and the Michigan Jewish Sports Hall of Fame in 2004.
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 08-27-2013, 07:04 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    James F. Hawkins---AKA Jim Hawkins

    Born: February 4, 1944, Ferndale, MI
    Died: Still alive

    Detroit sports writer;
    Detroit sports writer, 1970 - 2011

    Hawkins on Baseball Hall of Fame ballot
    Former Superiorite is a finalist for the Spink Award for baseball writers
    By: Ken Olson, Superior Telegram

    Jim Hawkins, a 1962 graduate of Superior Cathedral High School, is on the ballot for the 2013 J.G. Taylor Spink Award, which is the highest award given by the Baseball Writers Association of American. The winner will join other Spin Award winners in the baseball writer’s wing at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y. (Photo Courtesy of Penny Hawkins)

    Talk about it
    Jim Hawkins grew up loving the sport of baseball as a youth in Superior.

    Whether it was playing a pick-up game near his home in Hammond Park, collecting baseball cards or going to watch the Superior Blues as a member of the “Knot Hole Gang” in the 1950s, Hawkins loved baseball.

    His love for the sport led him into a 40-year sports writing career, which included covering the Detroit Tigers from 1970 until his retirement in 2011.

    On July 10, Hawkins learned he was one of three finalists for the 2013 J.G. Taylor Spink Award, which is the highest award given by the Baseball Writers Association of America to its members.

    The award was instituted in 1962 and named after J.G. Taylor Spink, publisher of The Sporting News from 1914 to 1962 and the award’s first recipient. Winners are recognized in a wing at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y.

    “It’s quite an honor and exciting,” Hawkins said. “I knew I was under consideration, and Tuesday during the All-Star game friends started asking if I got the call from the committee yet. Then after 4 p.m., I got the call that I was on the ballot for 2013.

    “I don’t know if I have a chance of getting in, but just being on the ballot is a huge award.”

    The 2012 baseball writer entry was Bob Elliott of the Toronto Star. Among previous Spink Award winners are well-known writers such as Fred Lieb, Shirley Povich, Jerome Holtzman, Ring Lardner, Sam Lacy and Peter Gammons.

    “That’s a pretty staggering list of names,” Hawkins said.

    The other two writers on the 2013 Spink ballot are Paul Hagen, who covered the Texas Rangers and Philadelphia Phillies, and Russell Schneider, who worked at the Cleveland Plain Dealer before retiring in the 1970s.

    Hawkins attended Pattison Elementary School through the third grade and then transferred to the new Cathedral School, eventually graduating in 1962.

    After graduating from the University of Wisconsin in 1966, Hawkins knew he wanted to be a sports writer and took an intern position at the Milwaukee Journal.

    “All I wanted to be was a sports writer,” Hawkins said.

    His first fulltime job was with the Wilmington (Del.) News Journal. He then spent two years at the Baltimore Evening Sun before getting hired by the Detroit Free Press in 1970 to cover the Tigers.

    “At the time I was the youngest regular baseball writer in the country,” Hawkins said. “When I retired in 2011, I held BBWAA card No. 12. The cards are based on seniority, so only 11 writers in the country — the world, actually, since we have members in Japan and Latin America — had been covering major league baseball longer than I had. I guess that means I’m old.”

    Hawkins, who lives in St. Petersburg, Fla., keeps busy working part-time for MLB.com. He recently covered a game in which Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Roy Holliday was making a re-hab start.

    Hawkins is married to the former Penny Johnson of Brule, and they have two children: Leslie Dinauer, who lives in Boulder, Colo., and Mark, who works for a cruise line out of the Grand Cayman Islands. Penny’s mother, Minerva Johnson, still lives in Brule.

    Hawkins worked at Peoples Drug Store through high school and remembers years earlier watching sporting events on a TV placed in the window of the drug store.

    “We didn’t have a TV at home, a lot of people didn’t at that time, but we could go to Peoples and watch the big games on their TV,” Hawkins said. “I remember watching a World Series game there in the mid-1950s, and during one game Bob Bennett was among the crowd.”

    Bennett was a Superior police officer and former professional baseball player for the Superior Blues. He was on the Blues championship team in 1952 and after that was a professional scout with the Chicago White Sox organization.

    “Bob was there watching the game with a bunch of us kids and he was calling all of the pitches,” Hawkins said. “We were amazed he knew what pitch was going to be thrown.”

    Hawkins also remembers having a Superior Evening Telegram paper route from 1956-57.

    “I picked up my papers at the old Telegram Building on 13th and Tower Ave., and my first stop was J.C. Penney’s across the street,” Hawkins said. “Then I’d make my way up to Globe News, down Belknap, then back down Ogden Ave. Boy this brings back a lot of memories.”

    During his career Hawkins has written eight books, the latest in 2010 on Al Kaline, who Hawkins said “was the best Tiger player I covered by far.”

    Other books included the biography of Mark “the Bird” Fidrych and the autobiography of Ron LeFlore, which was published in three languages and made into a TV movie starring LeVar Burton.

    “The book on LeFlore came out in English and Japanese, because he played a number of years in Japan,” Hawkins said. “Then when he signed with the Montreal Expos, I got a call and was told they were going to release the book in French.

    “I still keep in touch with Ron, and unfortunately he lost a leg last winter. It had to do with smoking. He told me the disease, I can’t remember what it was, but it had nothing to do with diabetes. How ironic is it that a man that once led both leagues in stolen bases now had one of his legs stolen from him.”

    Hawkins also wrote books on the Daytona 500, The Masters, an instructional manual on golf, another book on the Tigers and a diary of the Tigers team during the 2008 season.

    “They had a good team that year and thought they were going to win it all,” Hawkins said. “They went on and finished dead last. I guess we kind of jinxed them.”

    Hawkins said the sport of baseball has changed drastically since 1970.

    “The game is so much different,” Hawkins said. “Writers were closer to the players back then and now players are multi-millionaires. When I started we were able to get a lot closer to the players. We traveled with the team and hung out them on the off days.”

    When Hawkins started covering the Tigers, he had something in common with a number of the players who played in the minor leagues for the Duluth Dukes.

    “Denny McLain, Gates Brown, Bill Northrup, we had a lot of guys that played in Duluth,” Hawkins said.

    Hawkins also had his run-ins with Tiger players, including McLain, who was going through a slump and dumped a bucket of water on Hawkins’ head.

    “He was struggling and thought he would take it out on me,” Hawkins said. “He got suspended for the incident, but we remained friends after that. It was stuff that went on in the clubhouse.”

    Hawkins also had his differences with manager Billy Martin.

    “He blamed me in 1973 for getting him fired,” Hawkins said. “He said I was close with the general manager and I told him to get rid of him. I told Billy, ‘If I had that much power you would have been fired a long time ago.’”

    Martin got hired right away as manager of the Texas Rangers, but he didn’t forget Hawkins.

    “I remember when I walked into the Rangers clubhouse Bill starting yelling, ‘Here comes Benedict Arnold, here comes Benedict Arnold.’ I didn’t have anything to do with his getting fired in Detroit, but I wish I would have.”

    Hawkins also made some friends in Detroit and three of his favorite Tigers were Kaline, Alan Trammell and Willie Horton.

    “Kaline was a very private person, I’m glad I was finally able to write a book on him,” Hawkins said. “Trammell was also a great guy and Willie was great with the kids. My son thought he was the greatest. After all these years he still asks about my son.”

    Hawkins also remembers when an 8- or 9-year-old Prince Fielder was running around the Tiger clubhouse with his dad Cecil.

    “He was a big kid and at the time if anybody would have told us that he’d end up being a major league star nobody would have believed it,” Hawkins said.

    If Hawkins is inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, he would be the second person from Superior so honored.

    Dave “Beauty” Bancroft was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee in 1971. He played for the Philadelphia Phillies, N.Y. Giants, Boston Braves and Brooklyn Robins, and was a part of the Giants’ World Series championship teams in 1921 and 1922.

    “I remember seeing him in the local pool hall when I was a kid,” Hawkins said. “Just being named along with Dave Bancroft is another huge honor.

    “Thinking back when I went to see the Blues as a member of ‘Knot Hole Gang,’ I never dreamed of going to visit the Hall of Fame, let along being in it.

    “I also never dreamed I’d be covering baseball for a living.”

    NOTES: Baseball writer winners are not considered to be members of the Hall. They are not “inducted” or “enshrined” but are permanently recognized in an exhibit at the Hall’s library. … The first vote Hawkins ever cast as a member of the BWAA Hall of Fame electorate was for Kaline. … Ballots for 2013 voting are due in September and the inductee will be announced at the MLB Winter Meetings in early December. … Hawkins’ brother, John, passed away in Superior last November. … Hawkins was also in the sports memorabilia business and at one time owned McLain’s Cy Young Awards from 1968 and 1969 and his AL MVP award from 1968.
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 10-12-2013, 09:51 AM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    ---------------------------------
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 01-26-2014, 07:46 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    George Puscas

    Born: April 8, 1927, Michigan
    Died: April 25, 2008, Franklin, MI, age 81,---d. congestive heart failure, diabetes, at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Pontiac, MI.

    Detroit sports writer;
    Detroit, MI, 3-year, (April 5, 1930 census)
    Detroit, MI, 12-year old, (April 2, 1940 census)
    US Army, WWII
    Detroit Free Press

    Father: Nicholas, born Romania, 1890?; Mother: Sarah, born Ohio, 1900?; Wife: Delphine Banka; Son: Charles J.; Son: James G.; Son: George N.; Daughter Victoria Jester;


    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 07-28-2013, 12:49 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    Daniel Sernoffsky

    Born: August 11, 1949, Buffalo, NY
    Died: February 21, 2011, South Lebanon, PA, age 61,---d. cancer

    Lebanon (PA) sports writer;
    Graduated Iroquois Central HS (Elma, NY),
    Graduated Ottawa University (Ottawa, KS),
    Graduated School of Central Michigan University (Mt. Pleasant, MI),
    Lebanon Daily News (Lebanon, PA), sports writer, 1979 - 2011

    Father: Max A.; Mother: Mildred; Wife: Janice; Daughter: Dara Joel Wagler; Son: Nathan Jenni; Son: Leah (Jack) O'Leary; Son: Isaac (Erin);

    Lebanon Daily News' obituary, February 23, 2011
    Daily News sports writer Dan Sernoffsky dies, By Brad Rhen

    Award-winning Lebanon Daily News sports writer and political columnist Dan Sernoffsky died early Wednesday morning after a courageous battle with cancer.
    Sernoffsky, a resident of South Lebanon Township, was 61.

    "The entire staff of the Daily News is deeply saddened to learn of Dan's passing," said Lebanon Daily News Publisher Scott Downs. "Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to his family and friends.

    "Dan fought a courageous battle with cancer for more than a year, working right up until the very end," Downs added. "He was fond of the expression, 'Sometimes you gotta play hurt.' Dan took playing hurt to an entirely new level. When speaking of what kept him going, Dan credited his faith, his family and his work. It was a privilege to know him, and he will be missed."

    Sernoffsky was born Aug. 11, 1949, in Buffalo, N.Y., the son of Mildred Sernoffsky and the late Max A. Sernoffsky.

    He was a 1966 graduate of Iroquois Central High School in Elma, N.Y., and received his bachelor's degree from Ottawa University in Ottawa, Kan. He later attended graduate school at Central Michigan University in Mt. Pleasant, Mich.

    An Eagle Scout, Sernoffsky earned the award in 1962 as a member of Troop 251 in Wales Hollow, N.Y. He remained active in Scouting and was a committee member for Troop 12 in Lebanon and a member of the Lebanon County Eagle Scout Society at the time of his death.

    He was also involved in competitive masters swimming. In 2003, he won two national championships in his age group in the State Games of America, winning gold medals in the 50-yard backstroke and 50-yard freestyle while claiming a bronze medal in the 100-yard freestyle.

    A lifelong journalist, Sernoffsky joined the staff of the Lebanon Daily News in 1979 and was employed there at the time of his death.

    "Dan put everything he had into the beats that he covered," said Daily News Sports Editor Mike Givler. "And that didn't change even though his health was in decline. He was a valuable member of the sports department and will never be fully replaced."

    Sernoffsky was perhaps best known for his coverage of the Hershey Bears minor league hockey team, which he began covering in 1985.

    "Dan was an extremely passionate and dedicated sports writer that presented himself in an extremely professional manner for the Hershey Bears and the Hershey Bears' fans," Bears President and General Manager Doug Yingst said by phone Wednesday from Toronto, where the Bears were scheduled to play that night. "He will be extremely missed and almost impossible to replace."

    Yingst, who has been with Bears for 29 years, said he has known Sernoffsky for about 25 years, and the two had a very close working relationship.

    "He was extremely hardworking," Yingst said. "Dan was never after the negative details of the players. He was always after the positive side of things. If the team was playing poorly, he told the story, but it never came out super negative."

    "The American Hockey League is saddened by the news of Dan's passing today," said AHL President and CEO David Andrews. "He was well respected by his peers for his coverage of the Hershey Bears and the AHL, and you'd be hard pressed to find a writer more dedicated to his beat than Dan was, right up until the end. Our condolences go out to his wife, Jan, his entire family and his friends and colleagues."

    In addition to hockey, Sernoffsky also covered fast-pitch softball for the Daily News, and in 2004 he received the Pennsylvania Amateur Softball Association's Sportswriter of the Year award for his coverage of fast-pitch softball.

    Irv Lutz, who got to know Sernoffsky while coaching for the South Lebanon/TNT fast-pitch team, said he and Sernoffsky became good friends in the last 10 years.

    "I knew him as Mr. Hershey Bears because of all the things he did with the Bears, ... but he did so much for fast-pitch softball, and if it wasn't for him, softball wouldn't have been as big as it was in Lebanon County," Lutz said. "Everybody wanted to come to play in Lebanon because they knew Dan would come out and write about the game."

    Lutz said he couldn't believe it when he recently heard that Sernoffsky was still working despite his fight with cancer.

    "He's one of the strongest people I know, and I consider him a genius," Lutz said. "He was very knowledgeable, not only with sports, but with his articles about politics and things like that."

    Sernoffsky won several awards throughout his career as a sports writer and editor. While he was the sports editor at the Republican Press in Salamanca, N.Y., he received the Western New York Wrestling Coaches Association's Outstanding Sportswriter of the Year award in 1974 and 1975 for his coverage of high school wrestling.

    He also won the AHL's 1994 James H. Ellery award, which is given annually to members of the news media who have contributed the most to the league.

    Additionally, Sernoffsky was elected to two halls of fame - the District Three Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2002 and the Central Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 2008.

    Don Scott, a past president of the Central Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame, said Sernoffsky's induction into the hall was well-deserved.

    "You don't have to be an athlete on the field to be inducted," he said. "He deserved it for what he did over the years for local sports. It wasn't just hockey."

    Scott, who is the public-address announcer for Bears games and a contributor to the Lebanon Daily News, has known Sernoffsky since Sernoffsky started working at the newspaper in 1979.

    "We worked together for a number of years and made trips to away hockey games that were always interesting, because when you drive for three or four hours, you talk about everything," Scott said. "We didn't always agree, but we had nice discussions about sports and politics. He was just a really good guy."

    Sernoffsky is survived by his wife, Janice; four children, Dara (Joel) Wagler of Lawrence, Kansas; Nathan (Jenni) of Mason, Ohio; Leah (Jack) O'Leary of Telford, Pa.; and Isaac (Erin) of Chicago; his mother; a sister, Judith Coder of East Aurora, N.Y., brothers Michael of Elizabethtown, James of Eugene, Ore., Douglas of South Wales, N.Y., Jeremiah of East Wennachie, Wash., and Max of Batavia, N.Y.; and five grandchildren.

    The Jesse H. Geigle Funeral Home of Harrisburg is handling the funeral. A graveside service and burial will be held at noon Friday at Shalolm Park in Churchville Cemetery, 51 S. Harrisburg St., Swatara Township, Dauphin County. It is open to the public.

    A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Monday at the Lantern Lodge ballroom in Myerstown. A luncheon will follow the service.

    In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be sent to Ottawa University Advancement Office, 1001 S. Cedar St., Ottawa, KS 66067; and The Cancer Treatment Centers of America, 1331 E. Wyoming Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19124.
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 07-27-2013, 11:21 PM.

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  • Bill Burgess
    replied
    John S. Ireland---AKA Jack Ireland

    Born: June 12, 1947, Wilmington, DE
    Died: July 27, 2013, New Castle, DE, age 66,---d. cancer

    Delaware sports writer;
    Graduated St. Edward's University (Austin, TX), 1969
    Seaford Leader, (6 years)
    News Journal, sports writer, April, 1975 -

    Wife: Daughter: Elizabeth (Brian); Daughter: Annie

    Jack Ireland poured his heart into sports reporting, even after it began giving out and he had to get another.

    That gave Ireland, who had an unbridled passion for family, faith and his high school alma mater, another object for his rampant affections, which rarely waned until his death on Thursday.

    On Sept. 25, 2000, Ireland received a heart transplant at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. The following year, The News Journal sports writer, referring to the unknown donor as Mr. Heart, made a vow in a story about his experience.

    “You and God have given me a second chance,” he wrote, “and it’s my job to do the very best I can with that opportunity.”

    Ireland lived up to that promise during the subsequent 12 years and 10 months before he died at age 66. It was cancer, not an ailing heart, that caused his death at the same hospital in which he received a second chance to live, said his wife, Mary Anne.

    Ireland, who lived in New Castle, retired in 2011 after 36 years writing about sports statewide at The News Journal, having most recently covered horse racing and providing weekly stories about local people and teams for the Crossroads sections.

    “He was a gentleman,” said Salesianum Athletic Director Mike Hart. “Jack was very personable the way he wrote about and interviewed people. Every time he called me, he used to say, ‘Mike, I hate to bother you.’ But it was never a bother.”

    Hart was quite familiar with Ireland’s unmatched allegiance to Salesianum, from which he graduated in 1964.

    Successes by Sallies teams made Ireland’s heart soar. Their failures were a disappointment. It never lasted long, as Ireland’s positive outlook always ensured a victory was likely the next time around.

    The Phillies and Notre Dame teams captivated him much the same way.

    “Jack never became jaded about sports,” News Journal sports editor Jason Levine said. “Sometimes, he told stories about his father taking him to Phillies games when he was a kid growing up in Wilmington. I always got the sense that Jack still followed sports with the same passion and love he had as that kid going to the game with his dad.”
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 07-28-2013, 12:06 PM.

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