‘The guy was a legend’: Loved ones gather to honor longtime Hawaii broadcaster Jim Leahey

Many shared stories and memories of the voice of University of Hawaii Athletics.
Published: Mar. 12, 2023 at 10:38 PM HST|Updated: Mar. 13, 2023 at 3:27 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Family and friends gathered at Saint Louis School on Sunday afternoon to celebrate the life of legendary sportscaster Jim Leahey, who died in January.

Many shared stories and memories of the voice of University of Hawaii Athletics.

“Jim meant so much to me and my broadcasting career, he pretty much taught me everything that I know,” UH men’s volleyball color commentator Chris McLauchlin told Hawaii News Now.

It was an afternoon filled with tears and laughter as hundreds filled Saint Louis’ Ching Center to pay their respects to Jim and his entire ohana.

“It’s just been really overwhelmingly beautiful,” said Jim’s son, Kanoa.

“The response from people, the outreach, people that have shared stories, that have shared aloha, that have talked about how my dad just, in his little way, gave them just a small piece of joy.”

The day was the true embodiment of what made Jim happy — bringing people together.

“He loved this place, he loved the people of Hawaii,” Kanoa said. “This was home and I think we’ve just been reminded just how beautiful the people here are.”

Many of Jim’s family and former broadcast partners took the stage to share fond memories of the man they called pops.

“I could be up there for hours talking about what we’ve done over the past 50 years,” UH baseball color commentator Pal Eldredge said. “The only one that comes to mind first is just what a pro the guy was.”

“I think of Jim all the time when I call the games with Kanoa because Kanoa brings in so many ‘Jim-isms’ into the broadcast and it makes me very nostalgic,” McLauchlin said.

Jim Leahey leaves behind a legacy that will never be forgotten.

“I love you dad, I miss you, but I know that you’re with us in spirit and as he would say malama pono kekahi I kekahi.”