The following is the third of three
submissions by legendary sportscaster Gil Stratton
(1922–2008) who's contributions to the industry included three successful careers. He started as an actor on Broadway, and was under contract to MGM prior to serving as a B-17 Bombardier in WWII. After it was mainly radio, movies, and then TV. In the summers Gil was a minor league baseball umpire, graduating into the Pacific Coast League in 1952. In 1954 he started at Channel 2 in LA as a sportscaster, a job he kept one way or another until retirment. Included in his many and varied assignments were the Rome Olympics, play-by-play for the LA Rams, Feature races from Santa Anita, Hollywood Park, and Del Mar. Tennis, golf, auto racing, and most everything in between. For over 30 years on CBS radio and TV Gil always opened his broadcasts with the tag line: "It's time to call 'em as we see 'em". This first story demonstrates how the craft of Sports Announcing was changed by the introduction of Television! We hope to see more Anecdotes like these submitted by veterans of the Industry.
First published: Saturday, October 23, 1999 - 03:59 pm
"AS I SAW 'EM"
by Gil Stratton
While making "Stalag 17", I was privileged to meet and know Bill Holden's personal valet, nicknamed "Sugar". While he acted and sounded very effeminate, Sugar could be a very tough guy. He had lost his manhood to enemy fire during World War I, and certainly was not gay. How he came to work for Holden was the story, Bill had won Sugar in a poker game from Brian Dunleavy.