Dec 26, 2007 6:26 pm US/Pacific
Retired L.A. Sportscaster Stu Nahan Dies At 81
LOS ANGELES (CBS) ―
Longtime Los Angeles sportscaster Stu Nahan, who was introduced to a worldwide audience with his role as a boxing announcer in all six "Rocky" films, died today at age 81, the Los Angeles Times reported on its Web site.
Nahan, 81, had been battling lymphoma.
Raised in Montreal, Nahan was a goaltender for minor league hockey teams in Pittsburgh and Los Angeles before becoming the play-by-play announcer for the Modesto Reds, a minor league baseball team, in 1956.
Nahan's next job was as a sportscaster at KCRA-TV Channel 3 in Sacramento, where he also hosted a children's show and was known as Skipper Stu.
He then moved to Philadelphia, where he announced Philadelphia Flyers hockey games and hosted a children's show on WKBS-TV Channel 48 as Captain Philadelphia.
Nahan came to Los Angeles in 1968 as a sportscaster on KABC-TV Channel 7, where he remained until 1977. He was at KNBC-TV Channel 4 from 1977-86 and KTLA-TV Channel 5 from 1988-99.
Nahan was also a sports talk show host at KABC-AM (790) and appeared on Los Angeles Dodgers-related programming on KFWB-AM (980) before retiring in 2004.
A milestone in Nahan's career came in 1976 when he was cast to appear in a low-budget film about a boxer who unexpectedly gets to challenge boxing's heavyweight champion.
"Rocky" would receive the best picture Oscar and spawn five sequels, all of which Nahan appeared in.
Nahan also appeared in the 1982 film "Fast Times at Ridgemont High," interviewing surfer Jeff Spicoli (Sean Penn) in a dream sequence, who tells Nahan, who was wearing a colorful jacket, "Hey dude, nice jacket."
The cameo appearance had an impact on a member of Baseball's Hall of Fame, Nahan told City News Service in May, shortly before he received the 2,339th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
"Every time I've seen Tony Gwynn the past 20 years he doesn't say, `Hi Stu,' he says, `Hey dude, nice jacket,"' Nahan said.
Nahan's Walk of Fame ceremony had been delayed because of his cancer treatment, but he said in May he was doing well.
"I was told if I didn't take immediate treatment, I'd be going to the great hockey rink in the sky in about six weeks," said Nahan, who will turn 81 next month. "But fortunately for me, I'm still here." Nahan said he was declared cancer-free April 1. "I'm feeling fine," Nahan said. "I've regained the use of all of my faculties. I walk, I drive. I do everything I used to do -- maybe not as quick as I used to do it."
(© MMVIII, CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved.)