Famed sportswriter Frank Deford dead at 78

Associated Press

Deford also was known for his booming voice delivering his unique takes on sports on National Public Radio for 37 years.

Frank Deford, sportswriter, has died, per multiple reports.

In 2013, Deford was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Barack Obama "for transforming how we think about sports".

Legendary sportswriter Frank Deford passed away Monday at the age of 78, per the Washington Post.

"Frank was dealing with an audience that doesn't turn to the sports pages first thing", said Tom Goldman, an NPR sports correspondent who recently spent time with Deford in Key West.




As someone who grew up reading Sports Illustrated every week when it arrived in the mail, Deford was a constant and welcome presence in my life for many years.

"In addition to his reporting for Real Sports, Deford wrote several documentaries for HBO including "Dare to Compete: The Struggle of Women in Sports", Sports on the Silver Screen", and "Barbaro". Deford's last commentary for NPR came earlier this month when he bid farewell to the Ringling Brothers/Barnum & Bailey Circus and to his listeners.

Considered by many the greatest sports writer in America, Deford leaves behind a litany of iconic pieces, none perhaps more so ingrained in the ethos of sports journalism than his story of boxer Billy Conn from 1985. "Nobody was better at connecting sports to the culture at large". "The world of sports commentaries will never be the same".

He also was named to the National Association of Sportscasters and Sportswriters Hall of Fame.

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