Fly Your Terrible Towels at Half Mast:

Myron Cope, the legendary voice of the Stillers, has passed away at the age of 79.

My particular Cope memory was listening to him during Plaxico Burress's first game with the Steelers, when Cope was unable after many tries to spit out his name. So he simply decided to refer to him as "Flex" for the rest of the game. What a great character.

Legendary voice of the Stillers? Related to Ben and Jerry?
2.27.2008 6:39pm
Bill Taylor:
He was the voice of the Steelers. It was probably just a typo. He came up with the Terrible Towel. He was on the radio for the Steelers for about 25 years, and only worked with two head coaches, Chuck Noll and Bill Cowher. Fans were known to listen to Myron the radio, while watching the Steelers on TV. When he retired in 2004, the Steelers didn't try to replace him in the booth. The just went from three announcers down to two.
2.27.2008 6:58pm
Dilan Esper (mail) (www):
The late Jim Healy, the great Southern California sportscaster, got some tapes of Cope and used to make fun of him incessantly. The guy was a totally unprofessional, homer announcer, sort of a local version of Dick Vitale. Nonetheless, I can see how a Steeler fan might like him.
2.27.2008 7:08pm
Donald (mail) (www):
It's not a typo; Todd Z. is making a inside-Pittsburgh joke. In "Pittsburghese," Steelers is pronounced "Stillers." (And down is pronounced "dahn," wash is pronounced "warsh," and so on.)

I lived in the 'burgh for the four years that I was in high school. I used to love listening to Myron, and would try to tune him in anytime I was passing through the city.

I can still hear his sign-off from the television sports section of the local news: "This is Myron Cope on sports." For those who heard him, his voice was even more distinctive than that of Howard Cosell.

For those of you who aren't familiar with him, Myron Cope is to Pittsburgh what Jack Buck is to St. Louis, what Harey Carey is to Chicago, what Joe Nuxhall is to Cincinnati, and what Van Miller is to Buffalo.
2.27.2008 7:12pm
"Stillers" is how true Pittsburghers - Cope above all -pronounce "Steelers".
2.27.2008 7:12pm
I will always remember Plaxico's first game for another reason. After making a diving catch in bounds without being down by contact, he forgot rule change, stood up and spiked the ball. Which of course was a fumble.
2.27.2008 7:16pm
Barry P. (mail):
That wasn't Burress's first game, it was his (and the team's) 4th game of his rookie season, against Jacksonville.

The spike/fumble was picked up and returned for a TD, but the Stillers still won. Yoy!

RIP, Myron.
2.27.2008 7:37pm
Cory J (mail):
I go to law school in Pittsburgh and from the Pittsburgh area, so I want to add my voice to the chorus of Cope fans.

If there's a beyond, I bet he's hosting Cope's Cabana with all the Steeler greats as guests. RIP, Myron!
2.27.2008 8:06pm
I am not from Pittsbugh but I lived in Monroeville for four years in the late 60s and early 70s. Along with the late Bob Prince, Pittsburgh had some great annoncers, Myron Cope being one of a kind. As Donald mentioned above, "This is Myron Cope on sports!!" was his signature send off. It wasn't the words, it was his unique voice and character that made it unforgettable. May he rest in peace.
2.27.2008 8:52pm
sjalterego (mail):
Raise an Arn City to the Cope. He was so much fun to listen to. He couldn't really speak except when he was announcing a game. During the excitement of the game the words came out well. When there was no action sometimes he couldn't get a complete sentence out as he fumbled around for words, made circumlocutions, etc.
2.27.2008 9:18pm
Grover Gardner (mail):
Oh, what a wonderful sound, brings back memories--meesic t' mah yers, fer cryin' ot lod! Is there a diacritical system on the planet that could possibly do justice to that amazing "o" sound in "Go Stillers!" or "Ahm gon go donton"? Git ot!

Baltimore's linguistic peculiarities are fairly well known up and down the east coast, but most people are amazed when you tell them there's a Pittsburgh accent. Then you do a bit for them and watch the expression their faces. It's fun!
2.28.2008 12:43am
In Pittsburgh doesn't gum band = rubber band? Vitamin I = Iron City Beer? And to quote, the late Dave Dudley who in the mother of all truck drivn' tunes sang, "I pulled outa Pittsburgh rollin' down that eastern seaboard."

It was a fun place to live when I was a kid and it didn't hurt when the Pirates won the WS in 71'.
2.28.2008 6:09am
Every bozo with a "rally" towel owes Myron a debt of gratitude.

I fondly recall watching games on TV with my father - the TV sound off, and Myron's screechy voice playing on the radio. Dad said all the network announcers were biased against the Black and Gold, but Myron certainly wasn't.

BT - Go Gators!
2.28.2008 9:23am
rarango (mail):
Pittsburgh has always had great announcers; Bob Prince was the voice of the Pirates for many years, and I learned about Myron Cope when I was at Grad School at the U of Pitt in the early 1970s. A distinctive voice; a partisan announcer, and every bit as much fun as Howard Cosell. RIP Myron, and I will certainly raise an Iron City to your memory. You were there when the steelers were 1 and 12; and you were there when they were at the top of the heap--you done good.
2.28.2008 10:58am
Chris from Lawrenceville:
Yinz are all jagoffs.
2.28.2008 8:11pm