Blackie Sherrod, the greatest Texas sportswriter of his generation or any other, now and forevermore, died Thursday afternoon at age 96.
Sherrod died at his home in Dallas of natural causes, said his wife, Joyce. He had been in hospice care for the past week.
Sherrod was voted Texas Sportswriter of the Year a record 16 times and was honored with the prestigious Red Smith Award, national recognition for lifetime achievement. He won so many awards over more than six decades at Texas newspapers, including The Dallas Morning News starting in 1985, that he stopped keeping plaques or certificates for anything other than first place.
But his greatest trophies may have been the lasting memories he created for legions of readers and his peers, in particular.
Felix McKnight, the late Dallas newspaperman who hired Sherrod at the Dallas Times Herald and had him do everything from a political convention to a moon shot to coordinating coverage of the Kennedy assassination, called him “the best newspaperman I ever knew.”
To best-selling author Dan Jenkins, speaking for generations of sportswriters Sherrod mentored, he was simply “our hero.”