Thursday, July 15, 2010

Clear. Concise. Correct. Remembering Queen's Bob Sheppard

By Eric Yun

Robert Leo “Bob” Shep- pard, longtime public ad- dress announcer for the New York Yankees, passed away Sunday morning. He was 99 years old.

"The Voice of God," as Reggie Jackson described him, was born in Ridgewood on October 12, 1910. He began his career with the Yankees on April 17, 1951. From Mickey Mantle to Derek Jeter, Sheppard introduced players for more than 50 years. Sheppard was also the public address announcer for the New York Giants football team from 1956-2005.

In 2007, when a bronchial infection forced Sheppard to miss the home opener, Jeter requested a recording of Sheppard to ensure no other man would announce his name at Yankee Stadium.

Sheppard was much more then a public address announcer. He was a very good athlete who played semi-professional football. He also served in the Navy during World War II.

Most importantly, Sheppard was a dedicated teacher. Before World War II he taught at Grover Cleveland High School. After serving in the war, Shepard was a speech teacher and chairman of the speech department at John Adams High School. He worked at John Adams for nearly 30 years from the mid 1940s to the early 1970s. He later became a speech professor for his alma mater, St. John's University.

Some of Sheppard's many honors and awards include the William J. Slocum "Long and Meritorious Service" Award from the New York chapter of the BBWAA, "Pride of the Yankees" award from the New York Yankees.

The funeral is planned for Thursday at 10:45 a.m. at St. Christopher's Church in Baldwin

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