Died: August 21, 2003.
Ken Coleman, a one-time voice for the Boston Red Sox, died on Aug. 21, 2003 while he was hospitalized with complications from bacterial meningitis. He was 78.
Coleman was a part of Red Sox broadcasts for 20 years. Some of his calls included the 1967 “Impossible Dream” season when the Red Sox made a surprise run to win the AL Pennant before losing to the Cardinals in the World Series. He also called the 1986 World Series that included the infamous play with Bill Buckner.
Johnny Pesky, a former Red Sox shortstop and one-time broadcast partner with Coleman, was quoted in press reports as saying, “(Coleman) was a great announcer. He should be in the Hall of Fame. The first thing that strikes you with him was his voice. (He) had a voice as good as any of them.”
Coleman had wanted to be a major league pitcher, but he was shot in the eye with a BB when he was 12. That began the dream of being a sports broadcaster.
His first job in broadcasting came with the Cleveland Indians and NFL Browns from 1952-65.
In 1966, he joined Ned Martin and Mel Parnell as they rotated in three-inning shifts between radio and TV broadcasts of Red Sox games.
In 1974, a new station bought the rights to Red Sox games and Coleman went to work for the Cincinnati Reds. Five years later, he returned to the Red Sox and held the job until he retired in 1989.
Coleman was induced into the Red Sox Hall of Fame in 2000.
Source: Associated Press