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Monday, July 17, 2017

The Writer's Life 7/17 - Departures

RIP Bob Wolff, 96, the longest running broadcaster in television and radio history. His career spanned 77 years. He was still doing occasional reports for cable outfits. He and Curt Gowdy are the only two broadcasters to be honored by both the Baseball and Basketball Hall of Fame. He has also been inducted into Madison Square Garden's Walk of Fame, and the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Hall of Fame. He served regionally as a TV play-by-play voice for eight teams in five different sports – the New York Knicks and Detroit Pistons of the NBA, as well as the New York Rangers of the NHL, the Washington Senators/Minnesota Twins of MLB, the Baltimore Colts, Washington Redskins, and Cleveland Browns of the NFL, and soccer's Tampa Bay Rowdies of the initial North American Soccer League. He is one of very few announcers to have covered each of America's four major team sports. In 1956 he called Don Larsen's perfect game across the country on the Mutual Broadcast System and around the world on the Armed Forces radio. Another of his classic broadcasts was the NY Giants - Baltimore Colts 1958 NFL Championship Game, dubbed "The Greatest Game Ever Played." He was also the TV voice of the New York Knicks' only two championships, in 1970 and 1973. He donated 1500 hours of his work to the Library of Congress. Here's a still of one of his many interviews:

RIP George Romero, 78, the king of low budget horror. Born in the Bronx, he began making movies at the age of 14 with an 8mm camera. His first full length feature, Night of the Living Dead (1968), endures as a classic of the zombie genre. Its budget was just over $100,000. He wore many hats in his long career. IMDb lists 28 titles under his name as writer, 20 as director, 15 as actor, ten as editor and three as cinematographer. Here's a quote attributed to him: "I don't think you need to spend $40 million to be creepy. The best horror films are the ones that are much less endowed." Thank you, sir.

RIP Martin Landau, 89, a Brooklyn boy who had a long run as a superior supporting player, equally at home on the big or small screen, in commercial or serious fare. He worked for five years as an illustrator for the NY Daily News before breaking into acting. There are 177 titles listed under his name at IMDb. Most of his early work was in TV and on the stage. He did 77 episodes of Mission: Impossible as master of disguise Rollin Hand, and 48 of Space: 1999. He won an Oscar for his portrayal of Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood (1994), and was nominated two other times. Here's a quote attributed to him: "What I do best, what I've always done best, is act." Indeed. Well done, sir. Here he is in his award-winning role, with Johnny Depp:

My thanks to the boy who asked his mom to buy a paperback in the Michael Jecks Knights Templar series, and to the woman who purchased More 60 Minute Gourmet by Pierre Franey, and to the young man who donated Fifty Shades Darker by E. L. James, to Herbie who donated two thrillers, and to local super Nick, who alerted me to a cache a tenant had discarded that contained several classics, plenty more great books for people to ignore.
Vic's Sixth novel: 
Vic's Short Works:

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