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Passing of a UTPA legend

Hall of Honors member Jim Mckone was pronounced dead at the age of 80 July 26. McKone and his wife Geraldine passed within six days of each other, she died July 20 at the age of 83.

Jim Mckone was announced into the Hall of Honors in 2009 as a Sports Information Director and he would return in 2008 as an intern for SID, after being retired for nine years.

Jim received the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Lifetime Achievement Award after his retirement in 1999. He spent 30 years as the SID at UTPA.

As SID he saw the college go from Pan American College in 1969 turn to UTPA in 1989. Through his time at UTPA he wrote a series of journal entries about UTPA Athletics in The Monitor  known as the “Bronc Diaries.” His entries ran in the local newspaper from 1987-98, in which 2,800 entries were submitted.His entries also earned a mention in The National Collegiate Athletic Association News.

As president of the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association from 1980-81, Jim was inducted into the Rio Grande Valley Sports Hall of Fame in 1994.

“Jim and Jerry McKone meant as much to Pan American as any husband-wife duo in the history of this University,” UTPA Director of Athletics Chris King said. “Jim’s tireless work ethic and meticulous record keeping are the reason why our archives are as good as they are today. He did a great job of promoting Bronc athletics for 30 years while his wife helped to promote the University. This is a tough day at Pan American. Both are already being missed greatly.”

Jerry grew up in Brownsville as a reporter for The Brownsville Herald then moved on to be a proofreader for the San Beneradino Sun-Telegram in California. Later,  she would work at and then Pan American University in the university’s public relations office into the early 2000s.

The memorial service will be held later this month. The details of their death and funeral arrangements will be released at a later date.


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