Notable sports figures who died in 2008

December 31, 2008
  • Email|
  • Print|
  • Single Page|
  • |
Text size +

Compiled by John Carney, Globe staff

ART ARAGON, 80, popular boxer of the 1940s and '50s who went 90-20-6 but never won a world title.

JOHN ASHLEY, 77, Hockey Hall of Fame referee.

COY BACON, 66, fierce pass rusher who spent 14 years in the NFL with the Rams, Bengals, and Redskins.

DICK BAHRE, 76, former NASCAR team owner and member of a prominent New England auto racing family.

SAMMY BAUGH, 94, Pro Football Hall of Famer who excelled as a quarterback, safety, and punter and helped revolutionize the passing game in the NFL.

BUZZIE BAVASI, 93, general manager who helped build Dodger championship teams in Brooklyn and Los Angeles.

TOMMY BOLT, 92, winner of the 1958 US Open and 14 other PGA events.

CHRISTOPHER BOWMAN, 40, US figure skating champion in 1989 and 1992.

ED BRINKMAN, 66, slick-fielding shortstop for the Senators and Tigers in the 1960s and '70s.

JOHN BUZHARDT, 71, pitcher for 11 seasons with the Cubs and White Sox.

SKIP CARAY, 68, voice of the Atlanta Braves for 33 years.

DON CARDWELL, 72, who hurled a no-hitter for the Cubs in 1960 and won eight games for the Miracle Mets in 1969.

BEN CARNEVALE, 92, Navy basketball coach for 20 years (1946-66) and head of the US Olympic Basketball Committee (1964-68).

PETE CASE, 67, guard for the Eagles and Giants from 1962-70.

CECILIA COLLEDGE, 87, innovative British figure skater who was the youngest Winter Olympian (11 years old in 1932) and won a silver medal in 1936.

DOTTIE COLLINS, 84, star pitcher in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League of the 1940s.

BILLY CONSOLO, 73, infielder for five teams, including the Red Sox from 1953-59.

BETTY CONSTABLE, 83, five-time national women's squash champion in the 1950s.

FRANK CORNISH, 40, backup offensive lineman on the Cowboys' Super Bowl champion teams of 1992 and 1993.

JIMMY CROLL, 88, Hall of Fame horse trainer (Holy Bull, Bet Twice).

TODD CRUZ, 52, infielder with six teams, including the 1983 world champion Orioles.

BRUCE DAL CANTON, 66, pitcher with four teams from 1967-77.

MILT DAVIS, 79, All-Pro defensive back who helped the Baltimore Colts win two NFL championships in the 1950s.

BUDDY DIAL, 71, receiver for the Steelers and Cowboys in the '60s.

JIM DOOLEY, 77, wide receiver (1952-61) and coach (1968-71) for the Bears.

KEVIN DUCKWORTH, 44, All-Star center for the Portland Trail Blazers.

MIKE DUKES, 72, linebacker for two AFL teams, including the Patriots in 1964-65.

DOCK ELLIS, 63, 19-game winner on the 1971 champion Pittsburgh Pirates.

JACK FALLA, 62, Boston University professor who covered the National Hockey League for Sports Illustrated in the 1980s.

JACK FAULKNER, 82, longtime executive with the Los Angeles Rams and coach of the Denver Broncos in 1962-63.

RED FOLEY, 79, official scorer in 10 World Series.

ROY FOSTER, 62, Indians outfielder in the early '70s.

MITCH FREROTTE, 43, offensive lineman who played in three Super Bowls for the Bills.

GEORGIA FRONTIERE, 80, St. Louis Rams owner.

DARELL GARRETSON, 76, longtime NBA official and director of officiating.

GENUINE RISK, 31, one of three fillies to win the Kentucky Derby (1980).

RAY GETLIFFE, 94, Bruins forward (1935-45) credited with nicknaming Maurice Richard "The Rocket" as a Montreal teammate.

JOEY GIARDELLO, 78, middleweight boxing champion from 1963-65.

RUSS GIBSON, 69, catcher on the Red Sox 1967 Impossible Dream team.

DON GILLIS, 85, pioneering Boston sportscaster.

GEREMI GONZALEZ, 33, pitcher for five teams, including the Red Sox in 2005.

DON GUTTERIDGE, 96, infielder for four teams (including the Red Sox in 1946-47) and manager of the White Sox in 1969-70.

AL HALL, 74, Olympic hammer thrower from Hanson.

NED HARKNESS, 89, coach of NCAA hockey champions at RPI (1954) and Cornell (1967, 1970).

HERB HASH, 97, Red Sox pitcher in 1940-41.

DON HASKINS, 78, Hall of Fame basketball coach who used five black starters to win the national title with Texas Western in 1966.

SHERRILL HEADRICK, 71, middle linebacker who played in two AFL title games for the Kansas City Chiefs.

LARRY HENNESSEY, 79, All-America basketball player at Villanova and member of the Philadelphia Warriors 1955-56 NBA champions.

GENE HICKERSON, 73, Hall of Fame guard for the Cleveland Browns.

WALLY HILGENBERG, 66, linebacker on four Vikings Super Bowl teams.

ERNIE HOLMES, 59, defensive lineman on the first two Steelers Super Bowl champions of the 1970s.

TOMMY HOLMES, 91, Boston Braves outfielder whose 37-game hitting streak in 1945 was an NL record until 1978.

MIKE HOLOVAK, 88, All-America fullback on BC's bowl teams of the 1940s and Patriots head coach from 1961-68.

JEROME HOLTZMAN, 82, Chicago sportswriter who introduced the save rule and became baseball's official historian.

BOB HOWSAM, 89, co-founder of the Denver Broncos and general manager of baseball's Cardinals and Reds.

SID HUDSON, 93, pitcher for the Senators and Red Sox in the '40s and '50s.

G. LARRY JAMES, 61, gold (4x400 relay) and silver (400 meters) medalist in the 1968 Olympics.

BOB JETER, 71, cornerback on the Packers championship teams of the 1960s.

CHARLIE JONES, 77, veteran ABC and NBC sportscaster.

KARL KASSULKE, 67, Pro Bowl safety for the Vikings.

KILLER KOWALSKI, 81, one of the biggest star "villains" of early televised pro wrestling, whose career lasted until 1977.

JOE KROL, 89, Canadian Football League Hall of Famer who was Canada's Athlete of the Year in 1946 and 1947.

RON LANCASTER, 69, Canadian Football League Hall of Famer who won Grey Cups as a coach and player.

BUDDY LeROUX, 77, former Red Sox trainer and co-owner, and owner of Suffolk Downs.

DICK LYNCH, 72, star cornerback for the Giants in the '50s and '60s.

HARRY MANGURIAN, 82, Celtics owner whose tenure (1979-83) included the 1981 championship.

ED MARION, 81, longtime NFL official.

PIT MARTIN, 64, NHL All-Star center with the Blackhawks in the 1960s and '70s.

JOHN MARZANO, 45, catcher for the Red Sox (1987-92), Rangers, and Mariners.

JOHN McCONNELL, 84, Columbus Blue Jackets owner.

JOHN McHALE, 86, general manager of the Expos, Tigers, and Braves.

JIM McKAY, 87, Emmy-winning anchor of ABC's Olympic coverage and "Wide World of Sports."

CHRIS MIMS, 38, Chargers defensive lineman from 1992-2000.

ORVILLE MOODY, 74, champion of the 1969 US Open as a qualifier - his only PGA Tour title.

BOBBY MURCER, 62, All-Star outfielder for the Yankees.

RED MURFF, 87, Mets scout who discovered Hall of Fame pitcher Nolan Ryan.

PETE NEWELL, 93, Hall of Fame basketball coach whose teams won an NCAA championship (Cal, 1959) and an Olympic gold medal (1960).

BUZZ NUTTER, 77, center on the Colts' NFL championship teams in 1958 and 1959.

JAMES BUSCH ORTHWEIN, 84, short-time Patriots owner who sold the team to Robert Kraft in 1994.

MIKE PATRICK, 55, Patriots punter from 1975-78.

JOHNNY PODRES, 75, Brooklyn Dodgers lefthander who beat the Yankees twice in the 1955 World Series.

BOB PURKEY, 78, All-Star pitcher on the Reds' 1961 NL champions and a 20-game winner in 1962.

JOHN RAUCH, 80, College Football Hall of Famer as a Georgia quarterback, and coach who led the Raiders to Super Bowl II.

JACK READER, 82, longtime NFL official who worked the first and third Super Bowls.

GARRETT REAGAN, 67, longtime Hingham High School hockey coach.

KEN REARDON, 86, Hall of Fame defenseman who played on two Stanley Cup champion Montreal teams.

HERB RICH, 79, defensive back on the 1956 NFL champion Giants.

DAVE RICKETTS, 73, backup catcher on the Cardinals' 1967 World Series champions.

STEVE RIDZIK, 78, pitcher on the 1950 NL champion Phillies.

WILL ROBINSON, 96, first black basketball coach at a Division 1 college (Illinois State, 1970-75).

PREACHER ROE, 92, pitcher on three Dodgers pennant-winners (1949, '52, '53) who went 127-84 in a 12-year career with three teams.

CARLOS SANTIAGO, 82, star infielder in the Negro leagues during the 1940s.

HERB SCORE, 75, AL Rookie of the Year in 1955 whose promise as a pitcher was shattered when he was hit in the face by a line drive in 1957.

DAVE SMITH, 53, All-Star closer who holds the Houston Astros record for games pitched.

LARRY SMITH, 68, football coach who led USC to the Rose Bowl three times and won 143 games with Tulane, Arizona, USC, and Missouri.

MIKE SOUCHAK, 81, winner of 15 PGA Tour events whose four-round score of 257 in the 1955 Texas Open stood as a record for 46 years.

GERRY STALEY, 87, pitcher who went 134-111 with six teams, including the 1959 AL champion White Sox.

CHUCK STOBBS, 79, pitcher for five teams (including the Red Sox in the '40s) remembered for surrendering a 565-foot homer to Mickey Mantle while with the Senators in 1953.

TOM TRESH, 71, 1962 AL Rookie of the Year for the Yankees and an All-Star at two positions (shortstop, outfield).

GENE UPSHAW, 63, Hall of Fame Raiders guard and longtime executive director of the NFL Players Association.

ED VARGO, 79, longtime National League umpire.

MICKEY VERNON, 90, All-Star first baseman who won two AL batting titles (1946, '53 with Washington) in a 20-year career (1956-57 with the Red Sox).

NICK WEATHERSPOON, 58, forward for four NBA teams from 1973-80.

GREG WELD, 64, winner of 21 US Auto Club sprint car races and series champion in 1967.

DWIGHT WHITE, 58, defensive end on the Steelers' four Super Bowl champions of the 1970s.

FRANK WHITELEY JR., 93, Hall of Famer horse trainer (Ruffian).

NICK WILLHITE, 67, hard-throwing lefthander on the Dodgers' championship teams of 1963 and '65.

WINNING COLORS, 23, last filly to win the Kentucky Derby (1988).

  • Email
  • Email
  • Print
  • Print
  • Single page
  • Single page
  • Reprints
  • Reprints
  • Share
  • Share
  • Comment
  • Comment
  • Share on DiggShare on Digg
  • Tag with Save this article
  • powered by
Your Name Your e-mail address (for return address purposes) E-mail address of recipients (separate multiple addresses with commas) Name and both e-mail fields are required.
Message (optional)
Disclaimer: does not share this information or keep it permanently, as it is for the sole purpose of sending this one time e-mail.

Red Sox player search

Find the latest stats and news on:
Youk | Big Papi | Coco Crisp |

Red Sox audio and video

Sox-related multimedia from around the web.