MOUNT PLEASANT, MICH. - He was born in Almada, Mich. and graduated from Central Michigan University. He started his 60-year career in sports broadcasting in Mount Pleasant -- a career that led to calling eight Super Bowl games, 28-years at Wimbledon, three Olympics and more.
Dick Enberg died Thursday, Dec. 21 at his home in California. Despite all the events he covered, Enberg never forgot his home state, the college where he got his start and the many good friends he left behind.
Dave Keilitz is one of those good friends.
"I've been close friends with Dick Enberg since the late 1960s," said Keilitz, who was the head baseball coach at Central Michigan from 1971-1984, then the school's Athletic Director from 1984-1994. "I woke up this morning to several messages about Dick's sudden passing, and I was stunned because I never knew him to have any health problems."
On Thursday, Dec. 21, Keilitz received a Christmas card in the mail at his Mt. Pleasant home from Dick and Barbara Enberg. He received it on the same day of Enberg's sudden passing.
"The Christmas card has a picture of Dick and Barbara surrounded by a couple of additional photos of their grandchildren," said Keilitz. "The infant on the card is a grandchild that was born in November."
Enberg was supposed to fly from his home in San Diego to Boston on Thursday where he'd spend the holiday with family, as well as meet his new grandchild for the first time. But that didn't happen.
"It's a real shocker," said Keilitz,
At the entrance of the John G. Kulhavi Events Center on CMU's campus, there's a statue of Dick Enberg that visitors cannot miss when they enter the facility. As the day went on, flowers and memorials were being placed at the base of the status, paying tribute to a man who went on to greatness, but he never forgot the school that helped him get there.
"Dick had great feelings for CMU and of course us for him," said Keilitz. "We were all so proud and honored to have him as our most famous alumnus.
"We will miss him dearly, not only Central Michigan, but everybody who ever listened to him. You always felt whenever you visited with him, you walked away thinking you were his best friend. That's how he made you feel. To me, he was the best of the best."
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