CNN reports that Sportscaster Jim McKay has died. McKay was a staple of my early childhood sports diet. If you are a child of the ’70s much of this will be familiar.
“NEW YORK (AP) — Jim McKay, the veteran and eloquent sportscaster thrust into the role of telling Americans about the tragedy at the 1972 Munich Olympics, has died. He was 87.
McKay died Saturday of natural causes at his farm in Monkton, Md. The broadcaster who considered horse racing his favorite sport died only hours before Big Brown attempted to win a Triple Crown at the Belmont Stakes.
He was host of ABC’s influential Wide World of Sports for more than 40 years, starting in 1961. The weekend series introduced viewers to all manner of strange, compelling and far-flung sports events.
McKay also covered 12 Olympics, but none more memorably than the Summer Games in Munich, Germany. He was the anchor when events turned grim with the news that Palestinian terrorists kidnapped 11 Israeli athletes. It was left to McKay to tell Americans when a commando raid to rescue the athletes ended in tragedy.
“They’re all gone,” McKay said.”
Here is a link to an interview McKay did in which he discusses the tragedy at Munich.
On a happier note here is a link to a post I did called The Agony of Defeat- Vinko Bogataj. That post references McKay’s time as the host of ABC’s Wide World of Sports.
I am going to cannibalize a bit of that old post to provide you with the intro to the show
“Spanning the globe to bring you the constant variety of sportâ€¦
the thrill of victoryâ€¦
and the agony of defeatâ€¦
the human drama of athletic competitionâ€¦
this is ABC’s Wide World of Sports!”
The video below is a clip of the opening. Talk about memories.