Braves announcer leaves
By Kathryn Purcell
While fans of Atlanta Braves baseball heard his voice carry over their radios for more than 30 years, campers and staff at Rutledge’s Camp Twin Lakes counted on his support for more than 15.
Though he is gone, Braves announcer Skip Caray’s legacy lives on at Camp Twin Lakes.
Caray’s relationship with the camp began in the early 1990s, through a friendship with Doug Hertz, an Atlanta businessman and the founder of Camp Twin Lakes, who coached Caray’s son in baseball and basketball, according to information provided by the camp. Attending a fund-raiser benefiting the camp – a roast of former Georgia Tech basketball coach Bobby Cremins – Caray asked Hertz how he could get involved with the camp’s establishment. After touring the newly opened Camp Twin Lakes facility in 1993, Caray asked to join the Board of Directors.
Though his travel schedule didn’t always allow him to attend meetings, Caray often talked up the camp, whose mission it is to “provide places and paths for children with serious illnesses and life challenges to experience the joys of childhood and grow their confidence and capabilities,” both during games and to his colleagues. He spoke so fondly of Camp Twin Lakes so often that many members of the Braves organization began to question how they could become involved.
Current Braves player Chipper Jones, for example, holds an annual golf tournament to benefit the camp, while former Brave Brian Jordan sits on the board.
Caray also aided the organization financially, through fund-raisers and donations.
Caray donated the proceeds from the sales of his bobblehead doll, totaling $7,000, to Camp Twin Lakes in 1997. On Thursday, July 17 of this year, the third annual Sports Radio 790 The Zone Radiothon benefiting Camp Twin Lakes raised more than $360,000, a total that will send 665 children to camp.
Hertz maintains that the impact Caray had on the camp is immeasurable.
“Skip never missed an opportunity to publicly or privately promote Camp Twin Lakes and tell our story,” Hertz said, according to information provided by the camp. “Directly or indirectly, Skip has helped thousands and thousands of children with serious illnesses and life challenges, and their families, enjoy a unique camping experience.”
To learn more about benefiting Camp Twin Lakes, and Caray’s legacy, visit www.camptwinlakes.org.