Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Andrew A. Sebastian Sr. Feb. 25, 1942 - July 23, 2017 Football Announcer, Secret Santa Who Gave It Back

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Andrew A. Sebastian Sr. Feb. 25, 1942 - July 23, 2017 Football Announcer, Secret Santa Who Gave It Back

Article excerpt

Andrew Sebastian once attempted to be included in the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest gift basket in the world. He and his wife organized a fundraiser to collect toys in a giant blow-up pool.

They collected a lot of toys, but he never made it into the record books.

That did not deter Andy, as Mr. Sebastian was known.

He gift-wrapped each toy and gave it to the children at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. For several years, Mr. Sebastian and his wife, Sondra, would continue to take toys to children at the hospital through similar fundraisers.

It is no wonder then that Mr. Sebastian's family, friends and acquaintances, and strangers who came in contact with him, remember him as a man determined to give back.

Mr. Sebastian died Sunday of cancer. He was 75.

As the public address announcer for the Plum High School football team, Mr. Sebastian was often called the "voice of the Mustangs." Mr. Sebastian continued to be the announcer for three decades before retiring a year and a half ago for health reasons.

"He took up announcing for the football when I began playing for the Plum High School football team. He never looked back," said Steven, one of his three sons.

He said for his father it was not just announcing.

"For him it was all about the kids. He loved the kids who played. So many of them called me after he passed away to tell us how he had an impact on their lives," said Steven, who now lives in North Carolina.

Mr. Sebastian also was passionate about amateur and professional boxing and was the ring announcer for the sport for 30 years. "We were looking for an announcer and asked him to do it for us. That is how it began for him in boxing," said Jimmy Cvetic, a friend and director of the Western Pennsylvania Police Athletic League.

His love of announcing spilled into other fields as well, with Mr. Sebastian taking up the mantle of host for several community day celebrations.

He also was the captain of the Pittsburgh Central Catholic football team in 1960. …

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