Bud Furillo was even more effusive, "Ol' Kell was the best football announcer I ever heard."
Bob came West with the Rams in 1946, a position he had held since the inception of the pro football team in Cleveland in 1937.
He won immediate fame for his vivid broadcasts. Bob announced the PCL's Angel games from 1948 to 1957. He was twice named the LA Times Sportscaster of the Year.
He had a nightly controversial sports show on KMPC and was the sports director for the station. Jim Murray wrote: "His dinner-hour sports show made as many people gnash their teeth as cheer. But they listened. His mail was sulfuric.But they wrote."
Bob was born in Kalamazoo and attended high school in Elkhart, Indiana and Western Reserve University where he graduated in 1942. After graduation from high school, Bob moved to South Bend and a job announcing the football games of the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame.
He became director of sports for WGAR-Cleveland and began calling Ram games. In 1942 he joined WJR-Detroit where he broadcast the games of the University of Michigan, while commuting back to Cleveland on Sundays to do the Rams.
In the mid-1950s Bob became part of the Angels and Hollywood Stars at Wrigley Field and California Angels beginning announcing team in 1961. In 1964 Bob was carried out of the Coliseum during the Pro Bowl with a heart attack. The Voice of the Rams died September 9, 1966, at the age of 49.
Dan Reeves, the owner of the Rams, was one of Kelley's best Friend.
LA BOB wrote: "In the Fifties, the Rams main radio voice, and a deep baritone voice it was, dripping with formality and a sense of tremendous IMPORTANCE in every word, was the late Bob Kelley. Sidekicks included Bill Brundage, in the days when the sidekick mainly did interviews and took you to commercial. Used to love hearing Kelley say names like Catcavage and Lundy and Lipscomb. He made Rams games sound like news coverage. Right out of the "radio announcer" mold. They don't make many like that anymore.
laramfan wrote: "The Los Angeles sportsfan has been blessed by having the best broadcasters for their teams. Chick Hearn for the Lakers, Vin Scully for the Dodgers and Dick Enberg for the Rams. But, the best was Bob Kelley."
Kelley's son Bob says: "As kids we were fortunate that Dan Reeves, the owner of the Rams, was probably one of my father's best friends along with Bob Waterfield. I think as a gift to my mother, from Mr. Reeves, so that she could retain her sanity we spent almost all of our summers at the Rams summer camp where we helped Bill Granholm who was the equipment manager."
Bob Kelley arrives in Los Angeles LISTEN
Kelley calls the 1959 game against the Lions. LISTEN
Here is Kelley at his finest. Getting the entire starting Rams offensive players names out before the ball is snapped. It is the first play of the 1950 championship game against the Cleveland Browns. And what a play. LISTEN
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