Brickhouse Exhibit Slice of Sports History

Article excerpt

Byline: Bob Logan Daily Herald Sports Writer

Jack Brickhouse did so much play-by-play, it's a wonder he ever found time to play.

But Brickhouse did, occasionally at least, during a Chicago broadcasting career that began in 1940 and just kept going until his death 58 years later. The stories about the intensely human Brickhouse tossing his golf club in disgust, tearing up a losing race track ticket or schmoozing with show biz legend Jimmy Durante at the long-gone Chez Paree night club are timeless.

So was he. Nobody knows that better than Vince Lloyd, his sidekick on and off the air for decades.

"Jack and I worked seven days a week, doing wrestling and boxing, after the Cubs' season ended," Lloyd recalled. "Once he showed me a calendar, marked off for 13 straight weeks on the air, without a break.

"Jack had the greatest outlook on life of anyone I ever met. He didn't want to miss a minute of it."

Brickhouse's widow, Pat, along with Lloyd and the rest of the WGN clan, joined his friends and fans Thursday night at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in the Loop to open a permanent Jack Brickhouse exhibit. The brainchild of MBC president Bruce DuMont, it offers hundreds of photos, trophies, and memorabilia gathered by sports author and broadcaster George Castle.

It's a slice of Chicago sports history well worth the seeing - and hearing. Audio and TV clips of Brickhouse's voice, describing anything and everything under the sun, are the best part.

An incredible career, starting at Peoria radio station WMBD in 1934, would be reason enough for this unique tribute. The real reason why so many people won't forget this unique man was summed up by a few of them at Thursday's event.

"Jack Brickhouse was the man you wanted as a friend, a brother, a father or a co-worker," said Jack Rosenberg, his producer through decades of losing Cubs telecasts that Brickhouse somehow turned into winning memories. …