Editors Note: I, Nick Quaglia, just posted this blog for a guest blogger, Rob Tate.
Broadcasting legend, Gil Santos passed away late last week at 78.
Massachusetts, and New England as a whole lost a legend on Thursday. Gil Santos, longtime Patriots broadcaster and the voice of 3 Patriots Super Bowl Championships passed away Thursday on what was his 78th birthday.
While Santos is best known as the voice of the Patriots, a role now owned by Bob Socci, he was so much more than that. He was the morning sports reporter for WBZ-FM in Boston for an astounding 38 years, he commentated games for the Boston Celtics, Providence Friars basketball, Penn State Football, and Boston College football. He was the voice of the Boston Marathon and covered a total of 13 professional sports championships. Pretty good for a kid who grew up in the small town of Fairhaven on the south coast of Massachusetts.
Some listened to Santos with their parents on their morning drive to school or their way into work, but everyone knew Sundays were appointment listening for Gil Santos and Gino Cappelletti’s call of the New England Patriots. Santos and Gino multiple generations of Patriots fans, with Santos starting in 1966 and Gino joining him in the booth from 1971-1978 and would re-team from 1990-2011 when Patriots broadcasting rights returned to WBZ. Gil Santos 36 years of commentary for the Patriots is tied only with Eagles broadcaster, Merrill Reese for the longest-serving announcer in the NFL.
From WBSM and WNBH in New Bedford to WSAR and WALE in Fall River, to WBZ Boston and over 750 New England Patriots games, Santos was a beloved figure. Many former colleagues reminisced on Twitter, remembering Santos as one of the first people seen when walking into the WBZ newsroom, often times typing away at his typewriter, a strange sight for sure in the late 90’s and early 00’s.
For his work, Santos was inducted into the Patriots Hall of Fame in 2013 alongside fellow Patriots legend Tedy Bruschi. Santos is also a member of the New England Sports Museum Hall of Fame and the Fairhaven High School Hall of Fame. He will be missed by all.
“ THE PATRIOTS ARE SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS, THE PATRIOTS ARE SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS, THE BEST TEAM IN THE NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE” -Gil Santos, Super Bowl XXXVI.