W. C. Heinz

W. C. Heinz (January 11, 1915 – February 27, 2008), born Wilfred Charles Heinz, was an American sportswriter, war correspondent, journalist, and author.

Newspaper and magazine career

Heinz was born in Mount Vernon, New York. Following his graduation from Middlebury College in 1937, he joined the staff of the New York Sun. After serving as one of the newspaper's war correspondents in Europe during the second world war, Heinz returned to the United States and was awarded his own sports column called "The Sport Scene," which primarily covered boxing, baseball, football and horse racing.[1]

One of his pieces from around this time - Death of a Racehorse, written July 29, 1949 - is famous for its brevity (fewer than 1,000 words) and its quality, having been compared to the Gettysburg Address[2] and the works of Ernest Hemingway.[3] Written on a manual typewriter as the events unfolded, the story describes Air Lift, a promising two-year-old horse who was racing for the first time, and concludes less than two hours later: Air Lift broke a leg during that first race, and had to be euthanized.

Heinz became a freelance writer after the Sun ceased publishing in 1950. He was a regular contributor to magazines such as SPORT magazine, Life, The Saturday Evening Post, Esquire, True, Collier's, and Look. The best of his magazine and newspaper pieces are published in his books American Mirror, What A Time It Was: The Best of W.C. Heinz on Sports and The Top of His Game: The Best Sportswriting of W. C. Heinz.


He published his first book in 1958, a novel called The Professional, the story of a young fighter pursuing the middleweight boxing championship. Ernest Hemingway called the book "the only good novel I've ever read about a fighter, and an excellent novel in its own right." Heinz edited two boxing anthologies, The Fireside Book of Boxing and The Book of Boxing with Nathan Ward.

Heinz's additional books include Run to Daylight with football coach Vince Lombardi, The Surgeon, Emergency and Once They Heard the Cheers, in which the author travels the country revisiting sports heroes of his past. He also wrote the highly acclaimed magazine article, "The Rocky Road of Pistol Pete" about a baseball player, Pete Reiser, who fought through countless injuries to play the game that he loved.

In the late 1960s, Heinz collaborated with Dr. H. Richard Hornberger to write the novel MASH using the pen name of Richard Hooker.[4] The book was the precursor to the film MASH, which won the award for best film of the 1970 Cannes Film Festival and an Academy Award for best screenplay based on another medium in 1971. The book also served as the prototype for the long-running, Emmy Award-winning television series. In 2015, the Library of America published a collection of his best sportswriting, The Top of His Game.

A collection of Heinz's war writings including his dispatches from Europe and some post-war articles were republished in his book, When We Were One: Stories of World War II.


Heinz was a five-time winner of the E. P. Dutton Award for best magazine story of the year. He won the A. J. Liebling Award for outstanding boxing writing, and his work has been reprinted in more than 60 anthologies and textbooks. He was inducted into the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association Hall of Fame in 2001 and into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2004. In 2008, the Associated Press Sports Editors posthumously awarded him the Red Smith Award for his contributions to sports journalism.

Heinz died in Bennington, Vermont, at age 93.


  1. ^ Ward, Nathan (August/September 2004). "A Life in the Loser's Dressing Room Archived 2010-10-25 at the Wayback Machine" American Heritage. Retrieved 7-26-2010.
  2. ^ Heinz: Legendary sportswriter Archived 2012-03-31 at the Wayback Machine at APSportsEditors.org; by Kevin van Valkenburg; published July 14, 2008; retrieved September 17, 2012
  3. ^ The cult of 'Death of a Racehorse' at ESPN.com, by Gare Joyce; published March 3, 2008; retrieved September 17, 2012
  4. ^ Richard Goldstein (2008-02-28). "W. C. Heinz, 93, Writing Craftsman, Dies". nytimes.com.

External links

Bill Littlefield

William "Bill" Littlefield (born July 1948) was the host of National Public Radio and WBUR's Only A Game program from its beginning in 1993 to July 2018, covering mainstream and offbeat United States and international sports. Littlefield joined NPR in 1984.A graduate of Yale University and the Harvard University Graduate School of Education, Littlefield taught English at Curry College for 39 years and was a writer-in-residence there.“Take Me Out”, Bill’s collection of sport-and-games-related doggerel, was published in 2014, and in January 2015, Library of America published The Best of W.C. Heinz, which Bill edited, and for which he wrote the introduction. His other books include Only A Game and Keepers, both collections of his radio and magazine work. Littlefield has also authored three novels, Prospect and The Circus in the Woods, and Baseball Days and Champions: Stories of Ten Remarkable Athletes. He was the guest editor for Houghton Mifflin’s Best American Sports Writing in 1998, and his essay “The Gym At Third and Ross” was featured in the 2013 edition. He also writes a bi-monthly column in The Boston Globe in which he reviews sports books.In addition to penning his own books, Littlefield served as the guest editor of the 1998 edition of The Best American Sports Writing.

David S. Sheridan

David S. Sheridan (10 July 1908, Brooklyn – 29 April 2004, Argyle, New York) was the inventor of the "disposable" plastic endotracheal tube.

David was the second of six sons of Adolf and Anna Sockolof, who immigrated to the United States from Russia. He changed his name from Sockolof to Sheridan in 1939. He attended school until 8th grade when he went to work with his father and brothers in the hardwood flooring business.

David Sheridan was the inventor of the modern "disposable" plastic endotracheal tube now used routinely in surgery. Previous to his invention, red rubber tubes were used, then sterilized, and re-used which often lead to the spread of disease and also a high risk of infection. Sheridan is thus credited with saving thousands of lives.He held more than 50 medical instrument patents and is credited with inventing the modern disposable catheter in the 1940s. In his lifetime he started and sold four catheter companies and was dubbed the "Catheter King" by Forbes magazine in 1988.Sheridan died in upstate New York at the age of 95.

Deaths in February 2008

The following is a list of notable deaths in February 2008.

Entries for each day are listed alphabetically by surname. A typical entry lists information in the following sequence:

Name, age, country of citizenship at birth, subsequent country of citizenship (if applicable), reason for notability, cause of death (if known), and reference.

Dorset, Vermont

Dorset is a town in Bennington County, Vermont, United States. The population was 2,031 at the 2010 census. Dorset is famous for being the location of Cephas Kent's Inn, where four meetings of the Convention that signed the Dorset Accords led to the independent Vermont Republic and future statehood. Dorset the site of America's oldest marble quarry and is the birthplace of Bill W., co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous. East Dorset is the site of the Wilson House and the Griffith Library. The town is named after the English county of Dorset.

The East Dorset marble quarry had been established by Bill W.'s great grandfather and stayed in the family for three generations. Marble from these quarries provided stone for the New York Public Library Main Branch building in New York City. The quarry closed and during the summer months serves as a popular swimming hole.The Dorset town center is defined as the Dorset census-designated place and had a population of 249 at the 2010 census.

Heinz (surname)

Heinz is a German surname and cognate of Henry. People with this surname name include:

André Heinz (born 1969), an American environmentalist

Bob Heinz (born 1947), a former American football defensive tackle

Christopher Heinz (born 1973), an American businessman

Drue Heinz, American arts patron

Erhard Heinz (born 1924), a German mathematician

George Heinz, an Australian rules footballer

Gerard Heinz (1904–1972), a German actor

Henry J. Heinz (1844–1919), Founder of H. J. Heinz Company

Jack Heinz (1908–1987), one time CEO of H. J. Heinz Company and father of Senator John Heinz

John Heinz (1938–1991), U.S. senator from Pennsylvania

Katharina Heinz (born 1987), a German skeleton racer

Marek Heinz (born 1977), Czech football player

Matthew Heinz (born 1977), an American doctor and politician

Pius Heinz (born 1989), German professional poker player

Teresa Heinz (born 1938), wife of US presidential candidate John Kerry, former widow of US senator John Heinz

Tim Heinz (born 1984), a Luxembourg footballer

W. C. Heinz (1915–2008), American sportswriter

Wolfgang Heinz (actor) (1900–1984)

Wolfgang Heinz (criminologist) (born 1942)

Wolfgang Heinz (politician) (born 1938)

Willi Heinz (born 1986), a New Zealand rugby union footballer

International Boxing Hall of Fame

The modern International Boxing Hall of Fame (IBHOF), located in Canastota, New York, United States, honors boxers, trainers and other contributors to the sport worldwide. The IBHOF started as a 1990 initiative by Ed Brophy to honor Canastota's world boxing champions, Carmen Basilio and Basilio's nephew, Billy Backus; the village of Canastota inaugurated the new museum, which showcases boxing's rich history.An earlier hall had been created in 1954, when The Ring magazine's Boxing Hall of Fame was launched, located at Madison Square Garden in New York City. When that Boxing Hall of Fame was disbanded in 1987, it had a total of 155 inductees. As of November 2018, all but 14 of those 155 have also been inducted to the IBHOF.

The IBHOF is one of two recognized Boxing Halls of Fame with the other being the World Boxing Hall of Fame (WBHF), with the IBHOF being the more widely recognized institution.

The International Boxing Hall of Fame conducts ceremonies each year to honor inductees which are annually attended by many former world boxing champions, as well as boxing and Hollywood celebrities. Artist Richard T. Slone has been the official artist of the IBHOF since 1997, creating portraits of inductees and other works for the Hall.

Professional boxers become eligible for election into the International Boxing Hall of Fame five years after their retirement. Inductees are selected by members of the Boxing Writers Association of America and an international panel of boxing historians, based on criteria in five separate categories:

Modern: Retired boxers whose last bout was no earlier than 1989. Prior to a 2014 rule change, the category reflected boxers whose last bout was after 1943.

Old Timers: Until 2014, the rule was boxers whose last bout was no earlier than 1893 and no later than 1942. This category has since changed, similar to the Veterans' Committee in baseball's Hall of Fame. It is now split into two categories.

Early Era: Boxers who fought from the beginning of Marquis of Queensbury Rules (1893) until 1942.

Late Era: Boxers who fought their bout from 1943 to 1988

Pioneers: Boxers whose last bout was in or prior to 1892. Generally, they are boxers who fought before the Marquis of Queensbury Rules.

Observers: Journalists, historians, writers and artists.

Non-Participants: People who made contributions to the sport of boxing apart from their roles as boxers or observers.

John Symank

John Richard Symank (August 31, 1935 – January 23, 2002) was an American college and professional football player who was a defensive back in the National Football League (NFL) for seven seasons during the 1950s and 1960s. Symank played college football for the University of Florida, and thereafter, he played professionally for the Green Bay Packers and St. Louis Cardinals of the NFL. He was later the head coach for Northern Arizona University and the University of Texas at Arlington football teams.

Life Time (M*A*S*H)

"Life Time" is the 11th episode in the eighth season of the CBS television series M*A*S*H. It originally aired on November 26, 1979, it was directed by Alan Alda and was co-written by Alan Alda and Dr. Walter D. Dishell, M.D., the latter of whom was the show's medical consultant, along with phantom assistance from authors W.C. Heinz, Ring Lardner, Jr., who had written the script for the film MASH, and even Richard Hooker, himself a former U.S. Army MASH unit surgeon, and author of the 1968 novel MASH: A Novel About Three Army Doctors, from which the film and series both drew their inspirations.

List of M*A*S*H novels

The M*A*S*H book series includes the original novel that inspired the movie and then the TV series. The first, MASH: A Novel About Three Army Doctors, was co-authored by H. Richard Hornberger (himself a former military surgeon) and W. C. Heinz (a former World War II war correspondent); it was published in 1968 under the pen name Richard Hooker. It told the story of a U.S. Mobile Army Surgical Hospital in Korea during the Korean War. In 1972, Hornberger (writing again as Hooker) published the sequel M*A*S*H Goes to Maine, covering the lives of the surgeons after they returned home from the war.

After the success of the M*A*S*H TV series, a long series of "M*A*S*H Goes to X" novels appeared, beginning with M*A*S*H Goes to New Orleans in 1974. Although credited to Hooker and William E. Butterworth, they were essentially written by Butterworth alone. The sequel novels added many additional characters, mostly satiric caricatures of public figures from the 1970s: for instance, operatic tenor Luciano Pavarotti is parodied in the form of a singer named "Korsky-Rimsakov", and news anchor Dan Rather becomes the egotistical "Don Rhotten". The tone of the Butterworth novels is also markedly different from Hooker's original books, being much more broadly comical, less darkly satirical, and unrealistic.

After the conclusion of the "Butterworth" series with M*A*S*H Goes to Montreal (1977), a final "Hooker" novel was published, M*A*S*H Mania, which ignored the events and inconsistencies of the intervening novels and picked up where M*A*S*H Goes to Maine left off, depicting the original characters in middle age.

List of sports writers

The following is a partial list of sports writers.

Mark Kriegel

Mark Kriegel is an American author, journalist, and television commentator.

Mount Vernon, New York

Mount Vernon is a city in Westchester County, New York, United States. It is an inner suburb of New York City, immediately to the north of the borough of the Bronx. As of the 2010 census, Mount Vernon had a population of 67,292.

National Sports Media Association

The National Sports Media Association (NSMA), formerly the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association, is an organization of sports media members in the United States, and constitutes the American chapter of the International Sports Press Association (AIPS).Winston-Salem, North Carolina now serves as the headquarters for the NSMA, which is responsible for the organizing and counting of all the ballots for the National, State (50 states plus D.C.), and Hall of Fame winners. The organization had been based in Salisbury, North Carolina until 2017. There are now more than 100 inductees in the Hall of Fame. The organization plans and funds the Annual Awards Program.

Former television sportscaster Dave Goren serves as the NSMA's executive director.

Red Smith Award

The Red Smith Award is awarded by the Associated Press Sports Editors for outstanding contributions to sports journalism. It has been awarded annually at the APSE convention since 1981. Unlike many journalism awards, it is open to both writers and editors.

The Smith Award is traditionally announced in April and the winner receives the award in June at the annual APSE convention.

Richard Hooker (author)

Hiester Richard Hornberger Jr. (February 1, 1924 – November 4, 1997) was an American writer and surgeon who wrote under the pseudonym Richard Hooker. Hornberger's best-known work was his novel MASH (1968), based on his harrowing drama and comedic experiences as a wartime army surgeon doctor during the Korean War (1950–1953) and written in collaboration with W. C. Heinz. It was used as the basis for an award-winning, critically and commercially successful movie – M*A*S*H (1970) and two years later in an acclaimed long running television series (1972–1983) of the same name.

The Sun (New York City)

The Sun was a New York newspaper published from 1833 until 1950. It was considered a serious paper, like the city's two more successful broadsheets, The New York Times and the New York Herald Tribune. The Sun was the most politically conservative of the three.

Total Sports Publishing

Total Sports Publishing refers to a book publishing company based in Kingston, New York, that operated from 1998 to 2002. Prominent author John Thorn served as the division's publisher throughout its existence.

Vince Lombardi

Vincent Thomas Lombardi (June 11, 1913 – September 3, 1970) was an American football player, coach, and executive in the National Football League (NFL). He is best known as the head coach of the Green Bay Packers during the 1960s, where he led the team to three straight and five total NFL Championships in seven years, in addition to winning the first two Super Bowls at the conclusion of the 1966 and 1967 NFL seasons. Following his sudden death from cancer in 1970, the NFL Super Bowl trophy was named in his honor. He was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1971, the year after his death. Lombardi is considered by many to be the greatest coach in football history, and he is more significantly recognized as one of the greatest coaches and leaders in the history of any American sport.Lombardi began his coaching career as an assistant and later as a head coach at St. Cecilia High School in Englewood, New Jersey. He was an assistant coach at Fordham, at the United States Military Academy, and with the New York Giants before becoming a head coach for the Green Bay Packers from 1959 to 1967 and the Washington Redskins in 1969. He never had a losing season as a head coach in the NFL, compiling a regular season winning percentage of 72.8% (96–34–6), and 90% (9–1) in the postseason for an overall record of 105 wins, 35 losses, and 6 ties in the NFL.

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