Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully passed away on Tuesday night, the organisation announced. For 67 years, he delighted and informed Dodgers fans in Brooklyn and Los Angeles with his dulcet tones, providing the soundtrack of summer. He was 94.
One of the most adored figures in the history of the Dodgers’ team, Scully was known for his silky voice and easy storytelling. He started working on the Brooklyn Dodgers broadcasts in 1950 after graduating from Fordham University, where he also contributed to the establishment of the student radio station WFUV. When the team relocated to Los Angeles after the 1957 campaign, he went with them.
President and CEO of the Dodgers Stan Kasten issued a statement saying, “We have lost an icon.” “Vin Scully was one of the greatest voices in all of sports. He was a giant of a man, not only as a broadcaster, but as a humanitarian. He loved people. He loved life. He loved baseball and the Dodgers. And he loved his family. His voice will always be heard and etched in all of our minds forever. I know he was looking forward to joining the love of his life, Sandi. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family during this very difficult time. Vin will be truly missed.”
According to the team, which talked to family members, Scully passed away at his home in the Hidden Hills neighbourhood of Los Angeles. The reason of death was not disclosed.
In the history of professional sports, Scully has the longest relationship with a single team and covered every event. Beginning with Pee Wee Reese and Jackie Robinson in the 1950s, he went on to work with Don Drysdale and Sandy Koufax in the 1960s, Steve Garvey and Don Sutton in the 1970s, and Orel Hershiser and Fernando Valenzuela in the 1980s. Mike Piazza and Hideo Nomo were the players in the 1990s, and Clayton Kershaw, Manny Ramirez, and Yasiel Puig were the players in the 21st century.
Scully and his calming, perceptive demeanour remained a staple for the fans through the Dodgers’ frequent changes in personnel including players, managers, executives, owners, and even coastlines.
The well-known opening line of his broadcasts was, “Hi, everybody, and a very pleasant good evening to you wherever you may be.”
Scully, who was always kind in person and on broadcast, saw himself as nothing more than a conduit for the people and the game.
A memorial to Scully was displayed on the videoboard following the Dodgers’ victory at Oracle Park in San Francisco, where Scully broadcast his final game as a broadcaster in October 2016.
Before leaving, fans of the Dodgers and Giants stopped and clapped for Scully.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts stated, “There’s not a better storyteller, and I think everyone considers him family.” “He was in our living rooms for many generations. He lived a fantastic life, a legacy that will live on forever”
Scully was paid by the Dodgers, but he was never afraid to criticise a poor play or a manager’s choice, or to praise an opponent while making up storylines to go along with routine plays and notable achievements. He frequently cited the need to look with the eyes rather than the heart.
Magic Johnson, a former star player for the Lakers and a current part-owner of the Dodgers, stated on Twitter, “He had a voice & a way of storytelling that made you think he was only talking to you.” “Vin was the nicest & sweetest man outside of the booth & was beloved by all of our Dodgers family”.
Jaime Jarrin, the Dodgers’ Spanish announcer and a member of the Hall of Fame, expressed his sorrow over the passing of his coworker by posting the following on Twitter: “We’ve lost the greatest chronicler of baseball and any sport. I’ve lost the architect of my professional life, a beloved friend: Vin Scully. I’m experiencing how difficult it is to put my thoughts together now and all I can say is rest in peace, we’ll see each other again soon.”
The Bronx is where Vincent Edward Scully was born on November 29, 1927. He was the son of a silk salesman who passed away at the age of 7 from illness. The red-haired, blue-eyed Scully grew up playing stickball in the streets of Brooklyn when his mother relocated the family there.
In order to hear whatever college football game was on the air as a child, Scully would take a pillow, place it under the family’s four-legged radio, and lay his head squarely under the speaker. The child was distracted by the roar of the crowd as he munched on saltine crackers and drank milk nearby. He had the idea that he would like to initiate the action.
Scully started his career working baseball, football, and basketball games for the university’s radio station. He played outfield for the Fordham University baseball team for two years and served a brief stint in the US Navy.
He was employed by a Washington, D.C., CBS radio station at the age of 22.
He soon joined Red Barber of the Hall of Fame and Connie Desmond in the radio and television booths for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Scully made history when, at the age of 25, he became the youngest person to ever broadcast a World Series game.
In 1958, he headed to the West with the Dodgers. Scully called 20 no-hitters in addition to three perfect games (Don Larsen in the World Series of 1956, Koufax in 1965, and Dennis Martinez in 1991).
He was also broadcasting when Drysdale began his stretch of 582 3 scoreless innings in 1968, and he was there again when Hershiser shattered the record with 59 straight scoreless innings 20 years later.
In 1974, Hank Aaron faced the Dodgers when he hit his 715th home run to surpass Babe Ruth’s mark, and Scully of course called it.
“A Black man is getting a standing ovation in the Deep South for breaking a record of an all-time baseball idol,” Scully told listeners. “What a marvelous moment for baseball.”
The invention of the transistor radio, according to Scully, was “the greatest single break” of his career. At the first four seasons the Dodgers played in the large Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, fans had problems identifying the weaker players.
In 2016, he stated, “They were 70 or so odd rows away from the action.” They brought the radio in order to learn more about all the other players and to monitor what was happening on the field.
When the club relocated to Dodger Stadium in 1962, this practise persisted. Scully was able to unite generations of families with his remarks as listeners held radios to their ears and those who couldn’t attend did so from home or the automobile.
He frequently stated that it was best to rapidly recap a large drama before becoming silent so that spectators could hear the commotion. In 1965, after Koufax’s perfect game, Scully remained silent for 38 seconds before speaking once more. After Kirk Gibson’s pinch-hit home run to win Game 1 of the 1988 World Series, he remained mute for a while.
He was honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1982, was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame the following year, and in 2001 the stadium’s press box was named in his honour. In 2016, he had a street named in his honour that led to the main entrance of Dodger Stadium.
President Barack Obama awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in the same year.
Before retiring, Scully, a devout Catholic who went to service on Sundays before going to the ballpark, remarked, “God has been so good to me to allow me to do what I’m doing.” “A childhood dream that came to pass and then giving me 67 years to enjoy every minute of it. That’s a pretty large Thanksgiving day for me.”
Scully was the voice of the Dodgers in addition to announcing play-by-play for NFL and PGA Tour events, 25 World Series, and 12 All-Star Games. From 1983 until 1989, he served as NBC’s top baseball announcer.
Scully was also given the Commissioner’s Historic Achievement Award in 2014, which honours contributions and accomplishments with historical significance. He joined Rachel Robinson as the only non-players to ever receive the honour.
Scully was a very private man despite being one of the most popular broadcasters in the country. He would vanish once the baseball season was over. He hardly ever appeared on chat shows about sports or in person. He liked to be around his family the most.
His first spouse, Joan, passed away from an unintentional medication overdose in 1972. Three small children were left under his care. Two years later, while working as the Los Angeles Rams’ secretary, he met Sandra, who would ultimately become his second wife. She was previously married and had two young children; together, their families formed what Scully once referred to as “my own Brady Bunch.”
He stated to have come to the realisation that time was the most valuable resource in the world and that he wanted to use his time to spend with those he loved. Scully managed to stop smoking with the support of his family in the early 1960s. Scully put a picture of his family in the shirt pocket where he kept a pack of cigarettes. He took out the picture whenever he felt the need to smoke to serve as a reminder of his decision to give up. After eight months, Scully quit smoking forever.
Scully made a small number of appearances at Dodger Stadium after his retirement in 2016, and his endearing voice could occasionally be heard narrating a video that was shown during games. He was mostly satisfied to remain nearby his house.
In 2016, he stated, “I just want to be remembered as a good man, an honest man, and one who lived up to his own beliefs.”
Scully auctioned off years’ worth of his own stuff in 2020, raising more than $2 million. It was given in part to UCLA for ALS research.
He was predeceased by Sandra, his second wife. She passed away at the age of 76 in 2021 due to ALS complications. Together, the two had a daughter named Catherine throughout their 47 years of marriage.
Kelly, Erin, Todd, and Kevin are Scully’s additional kids. In 1994, a boy named Michael perished in a helicopter mishap.