Broadcasting Legend Dick Enberg Dies at Age 82

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistDecember 22, 2017

San Diego Padres broadcaster Dick Enberg waves to crowd at a retirement ceremony prior to the Padres final home baseball game of the season, against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)
Lenny Ignelzi/Associated Press

Sports broadcasting legend Dick Enberg died Thursday at the age of 82.

According to Bryce Miller of the San Diego Union-Tribune, Enberg's wife, Barbara, said he died Thursday morning in La Jolla, California, from what she thought was a heart attack.

The sportscaster was a familiar voice in the field for decades, providing play-by-play for the likes of NBC, ESPN and CBS while covering a number of sports.

Fox Sports San Diego provided a video tribute on its YouTube page at the time of Enberg's retirement in 2016 that helped capture his impact in the sports world:

According to Miller, Barbara Enberg said her family learned of the death when Dick Enberg did not get off a flight in Boston when they were supposed to meet.

"He was dressed with his bags packed at the door," she said. "We think it was a heart attack."

Enberg worked as a play-by-play television voice for the San Diego Padres for seven seasons until his retirement but was nationally known thanks to his "Oh my" catchphrase and presence on broadcasts for events such as the Super Bowl and Wimbledon.

A report from ESPN noted Enberg received a number of honors for his work, including the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame's Gowdy Award, the National Baseball Hall of Fame's Ford C. Frick Award and the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Rozelle Award.

Los Angeles Lakers radio voice John Ireland reflected on Enberg's broadcasting career—which started at KTLA in Los Angeles—and put him on the "Mount Rushmore of LA Sports Announcers":

AJ Cassavell of MLB.com summarized Enberg's career at the time of his retirement and said he called 42 NFL seasons, 28 Wimbledons, 15 NCAA basketball championship games, 10 Super Bowls, nine Rose Bowls and a World Series to go along with 14 Emmy awards and nine Sportscaster of the Year awards.

Some of the most famous games in sports history—including the NCAA championship game between Magic Johnson's Michigan State Spartans and Larry Bird's Indiana State Sycamores and Joe Montana's comeback in Super Bowl XXIII—featured Enberg on the microphone describing the action to sports fans gathered in their living rooms across the country.

He will forever be remembered as a titan in the industry, a professional who could seamlessly switch between different sports and capture the magnitude of the most memorable moments in broadcasting history.

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