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Jim McKay Passes Away

Veteran Sportscaster Was Longtime Host of ABC's Wide World of Sports 6/07/2008 11:26:00 AM Eastern

Veteran sportscaster Jim McKay passed away Saturday at the age of 86.

Jim McKayMcKay was the longtime host of ABC’s Wide World of Sports and also was on the anchor desk when America found out about the 1972 Munich Olympic tragedy.

He was the father of CBS News and Sports chief Sean McManus.

"There are not many men who achieved what Jim McKay achieved both professionally and personally," McManus said in a statement Saturday morning. "He had a flawless reputation and was a legendary figure in the history of sports television. However, with all his achievements the most important thing in his life was his family." (

McManus spoke with B&C on Thursday

, prior to his father's death, for a wide-ranging interview.)

"There are no superlatives that can adequately honor Jim McKay. He meant so much to so many people. He was a founding father of sports television, one of the most respected commentators in the history of broadcasting and journalism," ESPN and ABC Sports president George Bodenheimer said in a statement posted on the ESPN website.

"For more than 60 years he brought sports into the homes of Americans on Wide World of Sports, the Olympics and many other programs that captured the essence of the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.

"Jim was the ultimate colleague, having helped generations of people who have now taken his mantle. He was also a warm and devoted family man. My thoughts and prayers go out to his wife Margaret, Sean and Mary for their loss. And I know that countless people, around the world, have been touched by this great man. We will miss him."

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