From BR Bullpen
John Francis Buck
- Debut 1954
- Final Season 2001
- Born August 21, 1924 in Holyoke, MA USA
- Died June 18, 2002 in St. Louis, MO USA
Jack Buck was a beloved sportscaster in St. Louis. He was on KMOX in St. Louis for forty six seasons between 1954 to 2001. Buck was not a singular talent, as he also was CBS Radio's lead football announcer for 16 years.
A graduate of Ohio State, where he began his career, Buck soon arrived in St. Louis from Cleveland. He was paired with Harry Caray for the first fifteen seasons of his career. With the power of KMOX, much of the country, especially the intermountain west and the southeast, became familiar with Buck and Caray.
Buck left KMOX in 1960 to call American Football League games on ABC. He also left in 1976 for NBC, but his show flopped and he was back in St. Louis in 1977.
Buck continued with Mike Shannon through the 1970s and 1980s. In the 1990s, Buck was joined by his son Joe in the Cardinals booth. It was one of his singular joys to work with his son. Buck continued to broadcast Cardinals home games even as Parkinson's Disease began to rob him of his physical strength.
Some of the most notable moments in baseball history were recorded by Buck calling the action. He was doing the live television broadcast when Kirk Gibson hit a game winning home run off Dennis Eckersley in the 1988 World Series. He also called Ozzie Smith's home run in 1985 that sent the Cardinals to the World Series. He also was in the radio both for Mark McGwire's 62nd home run of the 1998 season.
Jack Buck died after a five month hospitalization for lung cancer in June 2002. He had every intention of broadcasting Cardinals games in 2002 even though his prognosis was bleak.
On Buck's career ledger are eight World Series broadcasts and 17 Super Bowls. He was honored with both the Ford C. Frick Award for excellence in baseball broadcasting (1987) and the Rozelle Award for excellence in football broadcasting (1996). In 1999, he was given a sports Emmy in the Life Achievement category.
Even though he has passed, Jack Buck's voice lives on.