Southeast Texas sports legend dies

BEAUMONT, Texas — Prominent sports legend Bob West passed away at 79-years-old Friday morning.

On July 29, 2023 the family of Bob West posted the news on Facebook.

West died at MD Anderson Cancer Center due to complications related to his Stage 4 Colon Cancer.

“We truly believe this was a blessing, as he was in unbearable pain and his prognosis was 1-2 years at best. Now he is at peace with all the sports greats in Heaven. He was an incredible father, husband, servant leader and trail blazer in the world of sports. We are so unbelievably proud of the life he lived and the impact he had on Southeast Texas sports and in the world as a whole,” his son Damon West shared to Facebook.

Bob West was the sports editor at Port Arthur News for 43 years. He retired in 2015, after starting in 1971.

He was originally from Missouri and moved to Texas to play golf at Lamar University on a scholarship.

He had an internship at the Beaumont Enterprise, where he took calls from stringers covering Louisiana Friday night football games.

He was a business major at the time, and soon discovered that his love of sports and his way with words could lead him to a career as a sports reporter.

He changed his major to communications and was hired full time at the Beaumont Journal in 1967.

After his retirement he continued to write golf columns for The Port Arthur News and Orange Leader.

His last column was published this month.

From the beginning of his career as sports editor, West made sure that the all-black Lincoln High School would get the same treatment as other schools.

He kept a drawer full of letters from people who did not want to see racial equality in the newspaper, according to an article from The Port Arthur News.

He won many awards during his career including two for Texas Sports Writer of the Year and The Good Samaritan Award presented by the Beaumont Texas Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

More details about his memorial service will be shared soon.

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