Pat Marsden dies at 69

BILL LANKHOF -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 1:46 PM ET

Pat Marsden, icon of broadcasting and master of mayhem, died early this morning of lung cancer at age 69.

Nobody who ever bellied up to a microphone lived larger, laughed louder, played harder or enjoyed life more than Marsden.

During a career spanning several generations, Marsden became a Canadian household fixture as the voice of the CFL from the 1960s to '80s.

"He lived his life the way he wanted to live it," fellow broadcaster and pal Fergie Olver said recently. "He had his own way. He'd light up a room. He loved a good argument, a joke, a story, his family. We should all be so lucky to live the life he lived."

He had an impish grin that welcomed viewers as CFTO sports director. That is, as the story goes, until one day he reached over the desk and punched CFTO news director Ted Stuebing.

"He was a man's man," said friend and former Argos' coach Leo Cahill. "He was an exceptionally gregarious guy; lived life to the fullest; the kind of guy who liked to gamble and have a drink and talk sports. And a good friend."

Marsden retired from broadcasting in 1991 and moved to Florida. But he was lured back to Toronto broadcasting by former Blue Jays president Paul Beeston, who brokered a deal that brought him to The FAN.

Marsden spent eight years as morning host on the FAN 590 from 1996 to 2004.

"He was a brilliant broadcaster in his day and helped rebuild this station," Nelson Millman, program director at The FAN, Toronto's all-sports station, said recently.

Marsden is survived by his wife T.A., daughter Taylor, Connor, and children Mike, Patti-Lee, and Ruth Mary, from his first marriage.

-- with files from CP

For more on this story, read Friday's Toronto Sun or torontosun.com


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