At first I was shocked, then deeply saddened. For those of you who aren't familiar with Dave, he has been the Seattle Mariners play by play announcer since the inception of the franchise way back in 1976. I was 9 then, when Seattle finally got a major league team. And just like they did this past year, the team stunk up the field year after year back then.
But that didn' matter. That's because Dave Niehaus was a true master at his craft. Day in and day out, with his enthusiasm and love for the game, he would turn a boring match-up into an event worth listening to. He was amazing at what he did, and I had the good fortune to grow up listening to him ply his skills.
Come to Seattle and you will hear it echoed wherever you go. This hall of fame announcer was like family. And he will be greatly missed. In fact, he may very well have been the most beloved figure in the history of Seattle sports.
As I soaked in the news, I started to read some of the stories online about his career and I found myself a bit overwhelmed. There have been few times in my life as an adult man that I have openly wept. This was one of them. They were not only tears of sadness, but happy tears remembering the amazing moments that are seared into the memory of my youth and young adulthood. Dave Niehuas delivered those memories to my radio or television screen in truly exciting and mesmerizing fashion.
As a father, I am more than a bit sad that I will not be able to now share future Dave Niehaus calls with Lukas. Hopefully I will get a chance to take him to see his exhibit in Cooperstown one day. But thanks to the wonders of technology, I will still be able to show him, and let him listen to, examples of how a Hall of Fame announcer brings the game to life.
This is probably his most iconic call, and one that always makes me a bit emotional.
Here are a few other famous plays in Mariner history that Niehaus made all the more special with his love for the game.
Thanks to Mrs. LIAYF, for a recent birthday I was given a baseball with his autograph. It is one of my most cherished possessions.
Thanks Dave. Fly, Fly, Away good sir. May you rest in peace. Your legend will certainly live on forever here in the Great Northwest.