Blue-and-white-clad fans, family and dignitaries gathered Thursday morning at St. Christopher’s Church in Baldwin for the funeral of veteran Yankees announcer Bob Sheppard.
Sheppard, who Reggie Jackson famously described as “The Voice of God,” died Sunday at his home in Baldwin. He was 99.
Yankees GM Brian Cashman eulogized the announcer, saying, “He was both a gentleman and a gentle man…his role was simple, but he wasn’t a simple man.”
Cashman also spoke highly of Sheppard on Tuesday at his mass. “He outworked everybody. He loved to get up every day and get after it and conquer the world,” he said.
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New York Giants co-owner John Mara and Hall of Fame St. John’s basketball coach Lou Carnesecca also praised Sheppard, who had served as announcer for both teams.
Paul Sheppard, Bob’s oldest son, also spoke at the mass, saying “He was a tough act to follow.” He also stressed the importance of faith and family in the late Sheppard’s life, which came second to none–not even baseball, he said.
Holding a sign emblazoned with the words “Long Live The Voice,” Baldwin native Sal Candiano listened intently to the ceremony, which was projected through speakers so crowds gat5hered outside could hear. Although he’s a regular at Citi Field, Candiano paid his respects to the legendary Yanks announcer. “Bob Sheppard transcends team rivalries,” he said. “He was a true ambassador of the game. No rivalry will keep me from paying respect to him.”
Former New York City mayor Rudy Guliani was also in attendance.
Sheppard was laid to rest Thursday afternoon at Pinelawn Cemetery in a private ceremony.
Additional reporting by Christine Smith.