Jim Leahey was a legendary broadcaster for University of Hawaii athletics.

Jim Leahey, who began his career calling University of Hawaii athletics nearly 60 years ago, passed away on Monday. He was 80.

Leahey called thousands of Hawaii games in his career across numerous sports, beginning with working as the P.A. announcer for the inaugural Rainbow Classic in 1964. He took over the Hawaii play-by-play duties in 1973 — after working alongside his father, Chuck, as an analyst on radio broadcasts — and began calling televised Hawaii games — KGMB, KFVE, and OCSports — in 1984. He was inducted into the University of Hawaii’s Sports Circle of Honor in 2016 and retired in 2018.

University of Hawaii athletics released a statement on Monday:

We’re deeply saddened by the passing of Jim Leahey, who was the voice of University of Hawai’i sports for more than four decades. Jim was there for our biggest moments. His iconic and colorful calls have been stamped into our collective memories. Jim was eloquent, knowledgeable and more than anything was a fierce supporter of this state and its great culture and sports teams. A giant in the industry, Jim took the broadcasting torch from his father Chuck and has since passed it on to his son Kanoa. Our heartfelt condolences go out to the entire Leahey ‘ohana during this difficult time. 

The Hawaii sports community is devastated by the news, and plenty of fans have shared tributes, including some of Leahey’s iconic calls:

Jim’s son, Kanoa, is now the TV play-by-play voice for Rainbow Warriors sports. For nearly a decade, they co-hosted a weekly sports talk show, Leahey and Leahey.

[Hawaii Athletics; Hawaii News Now; KHON2; Photo Credit: Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi]

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