We lost another legend Sunday when Frank Gifford died of natural causes at the age of 84. I never saw Frank play for the New York Giants but loved him as a sportscaster which is what I wanted to be since the 7th grade.

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Gifford was someone I looked up to. Gifford was doing exactly what I wanted to do, which is broadcast. He would do both the newscasts on CBS, then later on broadcast the games on Sundays, then later Monday nights. As if that was not enough, he was also doing commercials. This was the career I chose!  This is as close as I got, which I’ll sign up for anytime.

I loved watching Gifford with Dandy Don Meredith and Howard Cosell on Monday Night Football. That team was put together to keep an audience interested regardless of what was happening in the game, and they did. Gifford moved into the play by play slot for that job and not only was he great at it, but also the perfect straight man for his two partners. No matter who he worked with he handled it with class.

I was fortunate enough to meet Gifford twice. Once, when he was covering the diving championships for Wide World of Sports at Great Adventure in 1974 and I worked there as an usher. The second time was in 2013 on the Red Carpet at the New Jersey Hall Of Fame Inductions which I was covering for the station. Both were passing handshakes. Both times I couldn’t wait to tell my friends.

Who were some of the people you liked in the field you chose to work in?