Don Meredith, a star quarterback on the football field and a legendary broadcaster off it, died on Sunday in Santa Fe, N.M., after suffering a brain hemorrhage. He was at 72.
Meredith played nine seasons for the Dallas Cowboys in the 1960s, and then upstaged himself with a distinguished broadcasting career on ABC’s Monday Night Football, where he served two stints – from 1970-73 and 1977-84.
He was one of the first players to make the transition to the broadcast booth, and quickly won over viewers with a colorful, folksy, Southern style that included singing the Willie Nelson line “Turn out the lights, the party’s over” when a team’s lead seemed insurmountable.
“He was the best there was,” Meredith’s wife, Susan, told the Associated Press. “We lost a good one.”
Meredith, who grew up in Mount Vernon, Texas, led the Cowboys to NFL championship games in 1966 and 1967 but lost both times to Green Bay.