Van Miller, the long-time "voice of the Buffalo Bills," passed away on Friday at the age of 87.
Miller served as the Bills' radio broadcaster from the team''s inception in 1960 until his retirement in 2003. He served 37 seasons in total, accounting for a brief absence when his radio station no longer held broadcasting rights during a portion of the 1970s.
Miller's signature was his "Fandemonium" call, a combination of "fandom" and "pandemonium" that only those who have been to a football game in Buffalo could understand. He called both AFL championships and all four Super Bowls, a run that also included the greatest comeback in NFL history, a game many will always associate with his voice because the television feed was blacked out locally.
He received the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award in 2004. He is a member of the Buffalo Broadcasting Hall of Fame (1998) and Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame (1999), in addition to his well-earned place on the Bills Wall of Fame, which happened last season. (They had to kick him out of the voting room to accomplish that. He voted for someone else.)
So many people considered him family, but never met him. This loss will reverberate throughout the Bills community.
Here's the statement from President Russ Brandon:
"On behalf of Terry and Kim Pegula and everyone at One Bills Drive, we are all deeply saddened with the news of the passing of Van Miller."
"As the 'Voice of the Bills,' Van's historic radio calls of Bills games over the years will forever resonate with our fans. His Hall of Fame and Wall of Fame talent was overshadowed only by his engaging personality, his witty sense of humor and his love for the Bills."
"We will all dearly miss 'Uncle Van,' but his legacy will remain deeply embedded in our franchise's history and in the hearts of his countless fans in Western New York and throughout the NFL community. Our deepest sympathies, along with our thoughts and prayers, go out to his wife Gloria and all of Van's family during this difficult time."