A childhood bout with tuberculosis destined Frank Haraway to the sidelines with no chance of joining the quest for athletic stardom. But his fate with the crippling ailment didn’t stop him from writing about those who did achieve on the athletic field. For 44 years until he retired January 2, 1980, Haraway told readers of The Denver Post about the deeds of the areas sports legends.
He, maybe more than any other of the area’s journalists, chronicled the transition of Denver from a perceived “cow-town” image to major-league status. He was one of The Post’s most active writers when the Denver Broncos and professional football came on the scene and the Denver Rockets and Denver Nuggets heralded professional basketball.
Although not active as a sports writer after his retirement, Haraway didn’t allow the arrival of major-league baseball to escape his touch. He was the official scorer for the Rockies in their inaugural season, steadily doing his job for all of the team’s 79 home dates. “I had hoped all those years that major-league baseball would come to Denver during my lifetime,” Haraway said.
Haraway also covered the hills and valleys of University of Colorado athletics. He was a familiar byline on Buffalo football and basketball stories for four decades.
One of Haraway’s biggest disappointments was the loss of a prized souvenir baseball. Baseball legends Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig visited Haraway when he was bedridden. The two New York Yankees greats were in Denver on a barnstorming tour. Several years later, when Haraway was pitching from a wheelchair in a sandlot baseball game, a baseball was needed to complete the game. Haraway figured one or two pitches wouldn’t hurt his autographed souvenir from Ruth and Gehrig. But one pitch and a foul ball resulted in a lost possession. Haraway watched as his autographed baseball rolled down the gutter and right into a sewer opening, gone forever.
Haraway’s most cherished possessions from his days as a sports writer are the people he met, which were many. Haraway has had a love affair with sports. He watched events in all or parts of eight decades from the 1920’s to the 1990’s and reported them on the sports pages of The Post. Haraway explained, “I always considered myself a fan who got paid to write what I saw.” There wasn’t a need for any more.
I always considered myself a fan who got paid to write what I saw.