Little League International Mourns the Passing of Sportscaster Curt Gowdy
Mr. Gowdy, a sportscaster for more than six decades, covered a wide array of events, including the 1984 Little League Baseball World Series in Williamsport, Pa. He passed away on Sunday at the age of 86.
Mr. Gowdy’s television career was highlighted by several pioneering broadcasts, including the first Super Bowl, and his work on ABC’s “American Sportsman” series. He called 13 Major League Baseball World Series and 16 MLB all-star games, along with numerous Rose Bowl games, and was an anchor for the 1976 Olympic Winter Games in Montreal. In 1984, he called the play-by-play of the Little League Baseball World Series championship game, won by National Little League of Seoul, South Korea, 6-2, over National Little League of Altamonte Springs, Fla.
Mr. Gowdy’s son, Curt Gowdy Jr., is production and executive producer of the New York Mets’ SportsNet New York network. He was a long-time executive producer for ABC’s and ESPN’s coverage of the World Series tournament played annually in Williamsport, Pa.
“Mr. Gowdy’s influence on televised sports is historic in many ways, and it was our pleasure to have him lend his talents to coverage of the Little League World Series,” Stephen D. Keener, president and chief executive officer of Little League Baseball and Softball, said. “Curt Jr. continues the family legacy today, and for many years took great care in the presentation of the Little League World Series during his time with ABC. Our deepest condolences go out to Curt Jr. and the Gowdy family.”
Mr. Gowdy spent 15 years as the play-by-play announcer for the Boston Red Sox, and later became lead baseball announcer for NBC’s “Game of the Week.” He also covered several more Super Bowls and NCAA basketball final fours.
Along with being the first sportscaster to be honored with the George Foster Peabody Award for excellence in broadcasting, Mr. Gowdy’s influence has been recognized by several prominent organizations. In 1984, Mr. Gowdy was inducted into the broadcast wing of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, in Cooperstown, N.Y. On year later, he was elected to the American Sportscasters Hall of Fame. He has also been acknowledged by the Professional Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio; and the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass.
A native of Green River, Wyo., Mr. Gowdy was an avid hunter and fisherman, and in 1971 the State of Wyoming established The Curt Gowdy State Park in his honor.
Mr. Gowdy is survived by his wife, Jerre; daughter Cheryl Ann; sons Trevor and Curt Jr.; and five grandchildren.