Dick Connor once told an interviewer that he couldn’t imagine doing anything else than being a sports writer and columnist. All of his many readers, subjects and friends are glad he never changed his mind.
For 31 years, Connor wove his words of wisdom on the Denver and Colorado sports scene like no one else. His viewpoint was gospel, his energy equal whether telling the story of a Super Bowl, Olympics or a high school basketball tournament.
Connor’s dedication to this profession was recognized nationally as well as locally. His awards included induction into the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association Hall of Fame in April of 1992. His induction placed him with the likes of Red Smith, Bob Considine, Jim Murray and Will Grimsley. He also received the Lowell Thomas Journalist of the Year Award in 1987 from Denver’s chapter of Sigma Delta Chi. His consistent thread was being named Colorado Sports Writer of the Year 22 times, including 18 consecutive years. The National Football League presented Connor the 1991 Dick McCann Memorial Award for long and distinguished reporting in the field of pro football.
Connor spread his talents equally between Denver’s newspapers. He started at the Rocky Mountain News in 1961 and moved to the Denver Post in 1965. He went back to the News in 1982, but returned to The Post in 1988.
Connor’s writing haunts included a 10-year span of covering the Denver Broncos. He did it at a time when only one writer was assigned the task of tracking the seven-day-a-week job.
During his time with the Broncos as a columnist, Connor’s subjects were the who’s who of sports. There were the forever-memorable days of the Broncos’ first trip to the Super Bowl after the 1977 season.
When Connor was told he was going into the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame, he remarked, “Why, I’m still writing?”
The NFL season was in the stage of playoffs and there was that seat waiting for him in the press box. His colleagues were awaiting his arrival. Readers needed to be told the story. There were subjects to interview and friends to keep informed.
But Connor was battling cancer, a fight he lost December 30, 1992. He wanted to write another column. His readers, subjects and friends would give anything to read it.
Connor wove his words of wisdom on the Denver and Colorado sports scene like no one else.