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That night, as Smith’s shot cleared the right-field fence at old Busch Stadium, Buck bellowed across the airwaves, “Go crazy, folks! A man just as likely to be found smoking a cigar while shooting craps at a glitzy Las Vegas casino as he was to write poetry or be moved to tears by an ultrasound of one of his grandchildren. As with most challenges in his life, he used humor to get through them, once joking to a crowd, “I wish I’d get Alzheimer’s. Not Buck. All of the honors and awards, however, will never encapsulate who Jack Buck really was: a great father, a great humanitarian, and a great man. The irony: as a kid, Jack couldn’t seem to find anyone who wanted to listen to his baseball commentary. Jack Buck set a high standard in broadcasting. He broke into television in 1952 at WBNS-TV. For nearly two decades, Buck teamed with Hank Stram as the voices of Monday Night Football for CBS Radio. Buck goes back!” It drove the neighborhood kids crazy. For nearly 50 years, Jack Buck was the voice of the St. Louis Cardinals on KMOX/St. Buck’s most noted calls are like a “best of” album of iconic baseball moments. It’s a home run … and the Cardinals have won the game … by the score … of 3-2 … on a home run … by the Wizard!”, Or the authentic euphoria of Kirk Gibson’s homer to win Game 1 of the 1988 World Series: “I don’t believe … what I just saw!”. Nothing was said for much of the ride home, Jack enjoying the music, his 13-year-old daughter’s eyelids heavy from another late night at the ballpark. Chasing a fly ball he would shout, “Hickey hits a line drive. He was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1995. Jack Buck died on June 18, 2002. Instead, classical music filled the vehicle as Jack, smiling from ear to ear, quietly drove home with his youngest child, Julie. Not a baseball player like most boys of his era or even a sports announcer. Mon Closed. He has a star on the St. Louis Walk of Fame, and the portion of I-64/US-40 that cuts through St. Louis was named in his honor in 2009. Tue 10am - 6pm. The city was alive: shouts of joy filled the streets, car horns blared. “You would never have to worry when someone would come up to you and say, ‘Hey, I know your dad’ or ‘Let me tell you a story about your dad,’” says Julie Buck. Jack Buck’s Passionate 9/11 Poem “For America” Still Gives Us Chills. “That’s how I remember him when I grew up. His death in 2003 was met with much sorrow in St. Louis and with tributes across the country. A member of both the American Sportscasters Association Hall of Fame and the Radio Hall of Fame, Buck received the Ford C. Frick Award from the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1987. A Humanitarian, Too That’s why I think he was so great in big moments.”. The next morning, he was roasted. He was real, an Average Joe who lived his life in an above-average way. “You could tell when he was moved or thrilled by a moment, and it was genuine. When we got together … it was amazing to see how alert he was and how much he knew about football.”. In the bleachers at old Cleveland Municipal Stadium, Jack would announce as if on the radio, much to the ire of his brother, who would yell at him to “stop!” Sometimes, Earle would get so fed up that he would ditch Jack and go sit in another section. On one such night, he announced a fake baseball game with teams made up of his medications: “Sinemat is up to bat with Mirapex on first.”. During pickup games as a kid, he would announce the action as he played. As much a part of the soundtrack of their homes as the ring of the telephone, the bark of the family dog, or the shout of their parents calling them to dinner. Cardinals’ shortstop Ozzie Smith had just won Game 5 of the National League Championship Series with a solo home run in the bottom of the ninth inning. Buck received a Purple Heart and was in a Paris hospital when fighting ended. Born in 1924 in Holyoke, MA, John Francis Buck wanted to be a baseball announcer. “Kid,” he said, his smile shifting to a skeptical grin, “go crazy? Or the simplicity of his words behind Kirby Puckett’s walk-off shot in Game 6 of the 1991 Series: “And we’ll see ya … tomorrow night!” A call that Joe poignantly reprised during Cardinal David Freese’s home run that capped an epic Game 6 of the 2011 World Series. It was once estimated that he attended about 200 charity events a year, serving as master of ceremonies for a large majority of them.


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