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  • Robert E. Dutton---AKA Bob Dutton

    Born: October 15, 1944
    Died: Still Alive

    Kansas City / Tacoma sports writer;
    Kansas City Star, sports writer, 1981? - November, 2013
    Tacoma News Tribune, sports writer, November, 2013 - present

    Bob Dutton joins The News Tribune after more than 25 years at the Kansas City Star, including the last 13 covering baseball and the Royals. He was the president of the Baseball Writers' Association of America in 2008 and serves on the committee that nominates players to the Hall of Fame. Dutton had been The Star’s beat writer for the Kansas City Royals since 2000 when he moved from covering the Kansas Jayhawks as their beat writer.

    DeBruin Shafer Manley Isaacs Kenville Seeley Creedon Jauss Giles Ireland Lyons Woolnough O'Hara Lardner Fullbrook Keating Leo Fosko Ferguson Buey Luksa Gordon Felser Frayne Bryan McLeod Kozloski Willars Shannon Mooshil Bisher Matitsyn Matiki Wooldridge Kiseda Millward Bullock Amby Beckett Finney McCutcheon Ybarra Starkman Phillips Moynihan Black Moran Smith Solomon Esper Patton Houlihan Gibson Hochman Diffley Jill Coffin
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 03-05-2014, 09:28 PM.


    • Sidney Dorfman---AKA Sid Dorfman

      Born: February 9, 1920, Newark, NJ
      Died: February 15, 2014, Mountainside, NJ, age 94

      New Jersey sports writer;
      Newark Morning Ledger, 1935 -
      Metropolitan News Service, 1937 -

      by Ron Kaplan
      NJJN Features Editor
      February 26, 2014
      Sid Dorfman, who wrote about sports for more than 70 years for The Star-Ledger, died Feb. 17 at the age of 94.

      The Newark-born Dorfman began his career as a 15-year-old high school correspondent for the Newark-based Morning Ledger in 1935. Two years later he took on an additional position with Metropolitan News Service, which supplied such information as wedding notices and obituaries for newspapers around the New York-New Jersey area.

      When his boss at MNS ran off with the secretary in 1938, Dorfman took over the company; the following year, he changed the name to Dorf Feature Service.

      “Retirement is not for me,” Dorfman told NJ Jewish News in a 2006 interview at the company headquarters in Mountainside. “If you retire, you die. I love operating this organization, to be able to get up every morning and write columns….”

      Dorfman was credited with many innovations. He expanded coverage of high school and college athletics and girls’ sports, recognizing the potential for adding their mothers as readers. He also introduced an “all-state” ranking system for schools and individual athletes. “There are 322,000 vstudents in 47 colleges in New Jersey,” he said. “Factor in their families and the schools’ alumni, and you have millions of fans who were being neglected. Regional newspapers can’t keep up, so we provide that service.”

      “I can’t think of anything else I would have wanted to do,” he said. “I think there are other professions that are more important perhaps, but then again, what’s more important than the newspapers in relation to our democratic society?”

      Having been in the industry for three-quarters of a century, Dorfman saw his share of technological innovations. “We’re in a transitional period,” he said. “The whole industry is questioning what it has to do to remain viable.” Unlike other veteran newsmen, Dorfman said, he believed there can be an “accommodation between newspapers and the Internet.”

      “People will not give up their newspapers that easily. [They] still love the printed word right in front of them. Besides, you can’t take [the Internet] into the bathroom.”

      Jerry Izenberg, Dorfman’s long-time Star-Ledger associate and friend, wrote in a eulogy for the Star-Ledger last week: “He taught me so much by example. He made the paper the Bible of high school sports. He could walk into any sports event and do the job the way it was supposed to be done.

      “When we traveled together, I loved the way he made me laugh. I loved the prose he produced under the kind of time constraints outsiders can never understand. He was the combination of all I aspired to be.

      “The writer he was, was terrific. The man he was, was even better.”
      Last edited by Bill Burgess; 03-05-2014, 10:02 PM.


      • Barry D. Byers

        Born: March 27, 1952, Abbeville, SC
        Died: October 18, 2013, Rock Hill, SC, age 61,---d. cancer

        Rock Hill (SC) sports writer;
        Graduated Rock Hill HS (Rock Hill, SC)
        Rock Hill Herald (Rock Hill, SC), sports writer, 1989 -

        Father: Ernest Byers; Mother: Edith H.; Wife: Dawn; Daugher: April D.; Daughter: Carly B. Moxley; Daughter: Becky D.;

        Football died a little bit Friday.

        Not the game. The game marched on.

        Not the lights. The lights turned on.

        But what people know about high school football in Rock Hill – and a lot of other places, too, after reading about it in The Herald – lost a little bit of something.

        Because Barry Byers, who for 30 years had the only job he ever wanted – covering high school football in a place that loves the sport – died Friday.

        Barry Byers, 61, died on a football Friday in October.

        Nobody should die. Especially not from cancer after so much suffering.

        But if everybody has to go, they should go on a day that was the same canvas on which a life was painted. Barry Byers lived for the football game between tough and hard-nosed teams on a Friday night in the city of Rock Hill. He loved telling The Herald’s readers about the games, the players and the coaches.

        Byers was nicknamed “Mr. Football” because plainly he was.

        Barely over 5-foot-3, stout to the point of being burly as an iron stove, for three decades Byers thrust himself squarely in the middle of any and all high school sports stories in York County.

        Byers’ official title was assistant sports editor. But he was a high school writer, football especially, first and foremost.

        Before the Rock Hill High Bearcats took on South Pointe Friday night District 3 Stadium, everything stopped for a minute. The public address announcer told people that Barry, who was “dedicated in promoting high school athletics” like maybe no other, was gone.

        The players were lined up on the hash marks.

        “What always mattered to Barry was the players,” said Joe Montgomery, the Rock Hill coach. “He cared about them.”

        A stadium of fans fell to silence.

        “Barry was great at what he did because he loved what he did,” said Debbie Abels, publisher of The Herald. “He wasn’t just about sports. He was about sports in this community. He played on the Rock Hill High football team.

        “He covered many sports for us but his passion especially showed through when he wrote about prep sports. He was student athletes’ biggest fan. In turn, they and our readers had an immense respect for Barry.

        “He was one of a kind and will be greatly missed.”

        Barry was that friend in the paper’s sports section every morning, especially Saturday mornings, after Friday Night Football.

        “Barry Byers plain made high school sports in Rock Hill,” said Bill Warren, Rock Hill High athletics director in title. But for Warren, and anybody else involved with high school sports, Barry Byers was a friend.

        Football in York, Chester and Lancaster counties is not sport. It is part social life, part religious ceremony, part custom for anthropologists to wonder about.

        It is when life stops for a breath, and it is what Barry wrote about.

        Byers put the player, the team, before any other consideration. Sometimes even the score had to wait for Byers to give some young kid a pat on the back.

        “Barry Byers always gave the athletes the lead role, the starring role,” said Robert Hope, the retired longtime director of the Rock Hill YMCA and a Rock Hill High Bearcats fan for more than seven decades. “Barry was personable. He knew how to talk to people and then tell people about the game in The Herald the next day. For people who know sports in Rock Hill, much of what they learned came from Barry Byers. He will be missed by many – and I am one of them.”

        Football is the most brutal of games, filled with violent collisions and artful grace at the same time. But behind each face mask was a teenager, a kid, who became more when Barry Byers wrote about the exploits on that football field.

        A Barry Byers story had uncountable names in it. Any kid who made a great play, did something outstanding, the kid got a mention.

        The errors, the fumbles, the mistakes may have been mentioned but rarely if ever by name.

        Barry went to Rock Hill High and then went to work. He worked in a factory, like so many from Rock Hill who worked in textile mills in those days. He was an umpire, and he coached Little League. He loved the players.

        Long before David Guyton in Rock Hill was a judge known all over South Carolina for his fairness, he played Little League for Byers’ team. For the 30 years afterward, Guyton read Barry Byers’ writing in The Herald about high school sports.

        “He was as devoted to his Little League players as he was to telling people about the games in the paper,” Guyton said.

        Byers started covering games as what papers call a “stringer.” The stringer covers the game because there are more games than staff sportswriters, writes it up real fast afterwards, and gets paid a few dozen dollars for doing it.

        Then Barry Byers came to work for the sports department full-time in 1989, and he held on like a rodeo cowboy until only cancer could pull him from games.

        He wrote about the stars who made millions and the stars who gave back to kids, such as women’s basketball player Ivory Latta and the NFL’s Ben Watson. Even sick, he helped former NFL player Chris Hope organize a charity basketball game to raise money.

        Byers missed his own family’s birthdays and holidays to cover decades of games involving somebody else’s kids.

        “Might be the greatest game they ever play, I owe them to cover it,” Byers told me one day so many years ago. “It’s a holiday for them too and they have to play, so I’m gonna work. You think some kid is going to miss a game because it’s a birthday? I will even mention that the kid had a birthday, too, in the paper.”

        He wrote about every state champion football team – and every other sport as the players chased titles, too. He wrote for years about Latta, the girls basketball star from York who is the state scoring leader for boys or girls.

        A mother once called Byers and asked why he wrote so much about football, and Barry patiently explained that it was because of those stands filled with fans on Friday nights and the readers who wanted to know everything the next day.

        “Ma’am,” Barry told that lady with his voice that was so southern that it smelled of pecans and sweet tea and chocolate Yoo-hoo, spiced with hot dogs all-the-way and boiled peanuts and pork skins, “If five thousand people come to watch your son take a math test, I give you my word I will write a story about it. And I hope your son gets a 100 on his test.”

        Byers was thrilled when tiny Great Falls and Lewisville high schools in Chester County and Indian Land in Lancaster County won state titles.

        Byers was thrilled when the bigger schools won. He was thrilled to watch a mediocre team.

        He loved the games, and wanted to write about the players. If the kicker wore glasses, Byers wrote about the kicker and his glasses.

        Byers would argue with a statue over sports. The importance of high school sports may have been at issue in many an argument – and many times I was on the other side – but what never was at issue was that unconditional love Barry had for his job of covering high school sports.

        Barry wrote about the players who would play college and pro sports, and the players who would never play another down or inning or second half in their lives.

        Byers wrote stories about fans.

        And he did it all so that the people who read about football and all sports knew that he loved it just as much.

        The last football game Byers covered as he toughed through his long illness was the Northwestern Class AAAA, Division 2 state title game in 2012. At halftime he was a guest of Chris Miller, the radio broadcaster covering the game for Our Three Sons sports network.

        Chris Miller has won the award as best sports broadcaster in South Carolina for the past four years in a row. He has no peer in his business and is creating his own legend calling high school football games.

        But that day in 2012, Miller introduced Byers as “a legend in South Carolina high school sports.”

        Friday, after learning of Byers’ death, Chris Miller said that Byers covered high school football with a love and joy all will remember.

        “Covering high school sports, there was no one better than Barry Byers,” Miller said.
        Barry D. Byers - ROCK HILL - Mr. Barry D. Byers, Herald Assistant Sports Editor, died Friday, Oct. 18, 2013. He was 61. Services will be held at a later date. Born March 27, 1952, in Abbeville, S.C., Barry was the son of the late Ernest Byers and Edith H. Byers of Rock Hill. A 1970 graduate of Rock Hill High School, Barry's lifelong love affair with the newspaper business began with a paper route. While still employed with Verona Dyestuffs (Mobay), Barry was attending a ballgame and was approached by former Herald sportswriter Earl Gault about the possibility of being a stringer. In the fall of 1983, Barry started his writing career by covering Lewisville High School football games. He left Verona to work at The Herald full time in 1989. He was a champion of high school sports--not only writing about the ball games, but also the athletes: their personal triumphs, tragedies and unique stories. He was a mentor to many aspiring writers and made friends throughout the state and established contacts across the country. He kept track of every athlete he wrote about and could recall stats, scores and plays years after they had occurred. He considered many of his subjects to be extended family and welcomed them into his home and his life. Barry often said that the only other career he would have enjoyed would have been to coach high school football. He had the opportunity to coach the Lewisville football team for one game in 2004 and achieved a perfect record of 1-0. For many years, Barry coached several Rock Hill area little league baseball, youth football and basketball teams and followed the lives and careers of his former players. When he wasn't at a ballgame, writing about a ballgame or talking about a ballgame, he enjoyed time with his family, driving vacations, watching movies and television and entertaining friends. In addition to his mother, Barry is survived by his wife of 35 years, Dawn; three daughters, April D. Byers (Jay Neely) and Carly B. Moxley (Hunter), both of Rock Hill and Becky D. Byers of Hickory, N.C.; his grandchildren, Hunter A. Moxley, Kelsey N. Turner and Vonn Turner, all of Rock Hill; his brother, Brad Byers (Joi); his sisters, Gayla B. Williams (Larry) and Kim B. Smith (Bud), all of Rock Hill; and a number of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. Special thanks to Dr. Kathryn Mileham of Levine Cancer Institute and her caring staff, Robin and Joann; and to Hospice & Community Care. The family will receive friends from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 20, 2013, at Greene Funeral Home Northwest Chapel, 2133 Ebenezer Road, Rock Hill, S.C. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Hospice & Community Care, the Rock Hill Rescue Squad, or the high school athletic booster club of one's choice.
        Last edited by Bill Burgess; 03-07-2014, 07:23 AM.


        • Richard Sidney Heller--- AKA Dick Heller

          Born: January 10, 1938, Washington, DC
          Died: March 20, 2014, age 76,---d. of lung cancer, at a hospital in Silver Spring, MD.

          Washington, DC sports writer;

          Dick Heller, longtime D.C. sportswriter, dies at 76, By Matt Schudel,

          Dick Heller, who wrote about Washington’s sports teams for more than half a century and who, in the 1970s, was a key figure in a landmark court decision concerning the freedom of the press, died March 20 at a hospital in Silver Spring, Md. He was 76.

          He had lung cancer, his son Patrick Heller said.

          Mr. Heller was a native Washingtonian whose childhood was spent cheering for the city’s sports stars of the 1940s and ’50s, including Sammy Baugh of the Redskins and Mickey Vernon of the Senators. By then, both teams’ glory years were long past, and Mr. Heller learned to accept losing. But one loss he never got over came in 1971, when the Senators left Washington to become the Texas Rangers.

          As a columnist for the Washington Star and later for the Washington Times, Mr. Heller often called for major league baseball to return to the capital. His wish finally came true in 2005, when the Montreal Expos moved to Washington and were renamed the Nationals.

          “I saw a baseball team representing Washington take the field,” Mr. Heller wrote in the Washington Times, after the National’s first home game at RFK Stadium in April 2005. “I saw a throng of 45,000 gathered in a 44-year-old stadium to welcome the national pastime back to the nation’s capital after 34 years.

          “I saw the president of the United States throw out the first ball, and I forgave him for being a former majority owner of the Rangers — the franchise Bob Short swiped from us and plunked down in the unlikely hamlet of Arlington, Texas, in the awful autumn of 1971.

          “I saw all this, and I still don’t believe it.”

          Baseball was always Mr. Heller’s first sporting love, but he covered many other athletic endeavors throughout his career, including high school sports, boxing, football, tennis, horse racing and college basketball.

          In 1977, when the University of Maryland had one of the top men’s basketball teams in the country, The Washington Post published a story highlighting the players’ dismal academic records. Mr. Heller, then a columnist at the Star, went a step further, publishing the names of four players, with their photographs prominently displayed.

          “The University of Maryland’s basketball program is in danger of collapse because of poor schoolwork,” Mr. Heller wrote. “The Star has learned that four of the eight returning players . . . are on academic probation and in danger of flunking.”

          He named two others who had previously been on probation.

          The university’s student newspaper, the Diamondback, published the players’ grade-point averages. Six members of the team sued Mr. Heller and the Star, as well as the Diamondback, for invasion of privacy, publishing confidential university records and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The players asked for $72 million in damages.

          In 1979, the Maryland Court of Special Appeals upheld a lower-court decision and ruled in the papers’ favor in the case, known as Bilney v. Evening Star.

          The players “achieved the status of public figures solely by virtue of their membership on the University basketball team,” the court ruled. “Their possible exclusion from the team — whether for academic or any other reason — was therefore a matter of legitimate public interest.”

          The decision continued: “Having sought and basked in the limelight, by virtue of their membership on the team, appellants [i.e., the players] will not be heard to complain when the light focuses on their potentially imminent withdrawal from the team.”

          Bilney v. Evening Star remains an important case in First Amendment law and has been cited in legal proceedings, textbooks and courses in media law.

          Richard Sidney Heller was born Jan. 10, 1938, in Washington. His father worked in marketing, and his mother was a nurse.

          Mr. Heller began writing about sports while attending Woodward Prep, a now-defunct private school in the District, and he worked in his teens as an assistant to Senators announcer Bob Wolff. Mr. Heller studied briefly at American University before taking newspaper jobs at the Alexandria Gazette and the Star, where he worked until the paper folded in 1981.

          “Dick was kind of a mentor to the younger guys,” said Tim Kurkjian, an ESPN baseball writer and broadcaster who began his career at the Star. “He really took time to help us learn to write. I cannot stress enough how helpful he was and how patient he was with us.”

          Mr. Heller was a columnist for the Miami Herald for several years before returning to Washington in 1986 to work for the Times.

          Survivors include his wife of 42 years, Kathleen O’Reilly Heller of Silver Spring; three children, Chris Heller and Patrick Heller, both of Brooklyn, and Michael Heller of Somerville, Mass.; and two grandchildren.

          In later years, Mr. Heller often wrote columns about sports history. On Sept. 21, 2011, the 50th anniversary of the final baseball game at Washington’s old Griffith Stadium, he noted that a paltry crowd of 1,498 came out to see the expansion Senators play the Minnesota Twins — the franchise that had been the original Senators before departing after the 1960 season.

          The Senators lost, of course, 6-3.

          “Griffith’s death knell tolled silently,” Mr. Heller wrote, recalling that last game. “It was a mournful day for those of us who practically grew up there. Sure, Griffith was a dump, but it was our dump.

          “We remembered riding to the park and feeling the heart beat faster when the streetcar turned onto Florida Avenue and the stadium’s light towers loomed in the distance. We remembered the smell of bread baking in the Wonder Bread plant nearby. . . . We remembered the feel of 10-cent cardboard scorecards and the stubby pencils that came with them.

          “Memories like those last a lifetime.”


          • John Robertson

            Born: March 12, 1934, Winnipeg, Canada
            Died: January 25, 2014, Gimli, Manitoba, Canada

            Canadian sports writer;
            Attended St. Ignatius Elementary School
            Attended St. Paul's HS

            Father: Peter; Mother: Margaret;

            John Robertson (March 12, 1934 - January 25, 2014) was a Canadian media personality.
            A good amateur baseball pitcher, Robertson had a tryout in 1950 with Major League Baseball's Washington Senators. When his playing days ended, he would stay around the game as a reporter, in later years writing newspaper columns on the Montreal Expos and Toronto Blue Jays. In 1998, he was inducted in the Manitoba Baseball Hall of Fame.

            Journalism/Broadcasting career:
            1956-1958 : Winnipeg Free Press/Regina Leader-Post, Winnipeg, Manitoba/Regina, Saskatchewan
            1958-1963 : Winnipeg Tribune, Winnipeg, Manitoba
            1963-1966 : "Regina Leader-Post", Regina, Saskatchewan
            1966-1968 : "Toronto Telegram" Toronto, Ontario
            1968-1974 : Montreal Star, Montreal, Quebec
            1974-1977 : CFCF and CJAD radio stations, Montreal, Quebec
            1977-1982 : CBC, Winnipeg, Manitoba
            1982-1986 : Toronto Sun, Toronto, Ontario
            1986-1989 : Toronto Star,Toronto, Ontario

            Robertson worked as a sports reporter and columnist at the Regina Leader-Post in the early 1960s and grew to love the Saskatchewan Roughriders CFL football team over his hometown Winnipeg Blue Bombers. When the Roughriders were close to bankruptcy during a tragic 1979 season, Robertson flew in from Winnipeg (where he now worked for CBC Television) at his own expense to help out coach Ronnie Lancaster. The two men were flown around Saskatchewan in a small plane to drum up ticket sales for the final game of the 1979 season. Taylor Field was full to capacity for that game and the efforts of Lancaster and Robertson managed to save the football team from certain extinction. Around the same time in November 1979, in his regular back page column for Maclean's magazine, Robertson coined the term “Rider Pride" when he wrote about his experiences and his feeling that the Roughriders had the best fans in the CFL. Robertson never received a cent from the Saskatchewan Roughriders franchise for his efforts nor an acknowledgement that the term "Rider Pride," used extensively by the Saskatchewan Roughriders CFL franchise in their marketing and annual multi-million dollar merchandise sales, was coined by journalist John Robertson.

            The founder of the Manitoba Marathon, over the years Robertson also has been involved in charitable causes for the Winnipeg Harvest Food Bank, Gimli Food Bank and the Toronto Food Bank.

            Robertson was a 24Hours interviewer on CBWT in Winnipeg during the years September 1977 till September 1981. In 1981 he did a feature documentary on Terry Fox for 24Hours. He also wrote a twice-weekly sports column for the Winnipeg Free Press in 1978, and was considered at the time one of Canada's best sports writers. John resigned from 24Hours to run as a Progressive Conservative in the provincial riding of St. Vital in the 1981 election. After not winning that seat he joined the Winnipeg Sun where he wrote a regular sports column.

            John wrote three books: High Times with Stewart MacPherson (ISBN 0-9195-7618-4), Those Amazing Jays (ISBN 0-9199-5916-4), and "Rusty Staub of the Montreal Expos" (ISBN 013784462X) (ISBN 978-0137844623)
            In 1990 Robertson retired to Winnipeg Beach, Manitoba. He died January 25, 2014 in Gimli, Manitoba.


            • Steven N. Ellis

              Born: May 10, 1955, Winter Park, FL
              Died: November 19, 2009, Tallahassee, FL, age 54,---d. Tallahassee Memorial Hospital, after having suffered a massive stoke on November 10.

              Florida sports writer;
              Graduated Clemson University
              Orange and White, (founding editor)
              Osceola, editor, 1981 - February, 1990
              Tallahassee Democrat, February, 1990 - 2009, (Florida State University beat writer - football, basketball, baseball.

              Steve covered Florida State University athletics for nearly 30 years.


              • Tom Gage off the Detroit Tigers beat after 36 years. "Not by choice".
                The Ultimate Baseball Look

                Modern Synthetic Baseball Fields


                • There were several books in this guy. This thread being another


                  • Originally posted by Bucketfoot View Post
                    There were several books in this guy. This thread being another
                    You mean Bill?
                    Dave Bill Tom George Mark Bob Ernie Soupy Dick Alex Sparky
                    Joe Gary MCA Emanuel Sonny Dave Earl Stan
                    Jonathan Neil Roger Anthony Ray Thomas Art Don
                    Gates Philip John Warrior Rik Casey Tony Horace
                    Robin Bill Ernie JEDI


                    • Yes indeed


                      • Pioneering sportswriter Alison Gordon dies at 72.

                        The Ultimate Baseball Look

                        Modern Synthetic Baseball Fields


                        • Tom Gage is back covering the Detroit Tigers for Fox Sports-Detroit.
                          The Ultimate Baseball Look

                          Modern Synthetic Baseball Fields


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