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 Sidney Collins

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Sidney Collins

  • Birth 17 Jul 1922 Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana, USA
  • Death 2 May 1977 Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana, USA
  • Burial Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana, USA
  • Memorial ID 12781

Sports Announcer. Charismatic radio personality who is best remembered as the "Voice of the 500." He began serving as chief announcer for the broadcasts of the Indianapolis 500 in 1952, the year in which full lap-by-lap live coverage of the classic began. He was the man who coined the phase "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" and became synonymous with the race itself. It was his responsibility to tell international radio audiences of the crashes, deaths and disasters of his many racing fans. His extemporaneous eulogy of driver Eddie Sachs, who perished early in the 1964 classic, was one of the most memorable moments in broadcasting history and for which the Speedway received more than 30,000 letters asking for copies. During his career, Collins also served as president of the Indiana Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association, earned the Indiana's Number One Sportscaster award of the National Sportscaster Foundation, the Indianapolis Press Club's Top Radio Sportscaster Award twelve times out of twelve years awarded, and broadcasted the Indiana State High School Basketball Tournament for 27 years. He was also in great demand as a public speaker and Master of Ceremonies for events that included an Indianapolis Symphony birthday party for Jack Benny and the Opening of Indianapolis' Clowes Hall with Bob Hope. Despondent after having been diagnosed with the degenerative neuromuscular disorder, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig's Disease), Collins took his own life two weeks after returning from the Mayo Clinic and prior to his 30th broadcast of the 500-mile race.





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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 6 Oct 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 12781
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Sidney Collins (17 Jul 1922–2 May 1977), Find A Grave Memorial no. 12781, citing United Hebrew Congregation Cemetery, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .