James Alexander Gordon a.k.a. “Jag” is officially retiring from reading football (soccer to us Yankees) results! The veteran sports reader has been a fixture of the BBC since 1974, Jag was the last word in results.
Here’s what you need to know about this legend…
1. James Alexander Gordon is Retiring At Age 77
Farewell to the voice of football – Edinburgh-born James Alexander Gordon is retiring http://t.co/cdldfp4oRz
— Evening News (@edinburghpaper) July 24, 2013
Just last year, the spirited announcer had NO plans of any kind to retire.
According to Guardian.co.uk, he even said this:
I keep telling the BBC they will have to carry me out on a stretcher. I’ll die with the microphone in my hand,” he said in an interview.
So then, what happened? Read on!
2. Gordon Has Throat Cancer
Very sad that James Alexander Gordon has had to retire following surgery for cancer. Saturday teatimes won't be the same.
— LessGrumpyNow (@LessGrumpyNow) July 24, 2013
Not only does Gordon have throat cancer, he recently had his whole larynx removed in a risky surgery. According to BBC — as reported by Telegraph, “although his surgery was successful, ‘sadly his voice is now not strong enough to broadcast’.”
3. He Will Miss His Career
Sports Illustrated reported the the ex-announcer’s parting words:
It’s with great sorrow that I have to give up the most exciting part of my career, the classified football results. They have been my life.
Just today, he added:
Such fun getting it right, The most important thing, though, has been making it exciting for the listener.
An inside source reported by Telegraph also said:
But enough of this ‘James’. To those of us lucky enough to work at BBC Radio Sport, he is JAG. And JAG is an institution, a legend and a gentleman all rolled into one.
James will truly be missed.
4. Gordon Has Been An Announcer For Nearly 40 Years
According to Telegraph, Gordon has been living the career of his dreams ever since 1974. That’s a long time… nearly 40 years. The source also reports, he joined the BBC as an announcer and newsreader after a career in music publishing. The man has been all over the place.
5. Gordon Technically Retired Years Ago
I'm very sorry to announce James Alexander Gordon is to retire from reading the classified football results on BBC radio.
— Richard Burgess (@rburgessbbc) July 24, 2013
Guardian reports, although Gordon’s final departure from the BBC is heartbreaking… he’s actually been officially retired for quite some time now! He did, however, continue to stay and announce as a freelancer… probably because he loved it so much.
But, apparently not as much as his fans and listeners loved him.