Fred White

Fred E. White, 76, longtime broadcaster in Kansas City and the Midwest, passed away on May 15, 2013, at the Kansas City Hospice House.  He was born May 29, 1936 in the small town of Homer, Illinois, to  Edward E. and Mary Kate (Frazier) White.  His death coincidentally came one day after announcement of his pending retirement from the Kansas City Royals where he served as Director of Broadcast Services and Royals’ Alumni, working with radio affiliates and former players, conducting broadcast seminars and hosting youth baseball clinics with alumni throughout the greater broadcast area.
He studied at Eastern Illinois University before starting his broadcast career at WITY radio in Danville.  He then moved to KHAS radio in Hastings, NE.  He joined WIBW radio-TV in Topeka as Sports Director in 1967, where his broadcasts included K-State, KU, Washburn University, and high school sports coverage . 
His affiliation with K-State took him to Russell, KS, as a last-minute speaker for a Wildcat Club meeting, where he met his wife Barbara (Boxberger) who was visiting family in her hometown.  They married in 1974, living first in Topeka and then moving to Kansas City full-time when Fred left WIBW for his play-by-play duties as the Voice of the Kansas City Royals.  
Fred hosted various shows for Metrosports TV in Kansas City, including a popular golf show “Tee Time”; and served as host of Hometown Heroes, profiling Kansas City sports legends, which won three Midwest sports EMMY awards.
Fred also did extensive play-by-play for ESPN, including Major League baseball, major college football and basketball, the NBA, NFL and Canadian professional football games.  He broadcast 7 NCAA Final 4’s on radio; 11 college football bowl games on TV; 2 Canadian Grey Cup games; 7 American League Championship series; and 2 World Series.
He served as lead announcer for Big 8, Big 12, ACC, Metro and Atlantic 10 conference basketball, as well as Kansas State, Memphis State and Illinois statewide television packages.  His illustrious career included working for ESPN, CBS, NBC and ABC networks on free lance assignments as well as various syndications.
Fred was involved with many charitable organizations.  He was currently on the Board of Kansas Wildscape Foundation and worked with ALS, the March of Dimes, the Arthritis Foundation, American Cancer Society and the Special Olympics.  He was a former board member of the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame.  He hosted the Royals for Rainbows golf tournament in Wichita for 20 years.
Among the honors he received were Kansas Sportscaster of the Year numerous times; the Kansas Broadcasters Hall of Fame; Honorary Graduate of Kansas State University; Kansas State Favorite Adopted Son; and Missouri Sports Hall of Fame.

Fred and Barbara own KRSL radio in Russell, Kansas.  They are co-owners of KHOM/KBMV in West Plains, Missouri.  Fred was an avid reader and also enjoyed golf, hunting, and spending time on the Florida beach with Barbara.
Survivors include his devoted wife, Barbara of the home; two sons, Joe and John White of Kansas City; one daughter, Stacy White. Auburn, KS; three grandsons; one brother, Jack (JoEllyn) White,  Urbana, IL; one sister Marilyn Lynch, Fairmount, IL; and numerous nieces and nephews.  He also leaves a host of friends and colleagues–young and old–whose lives were greatly impacted by Fred’s mentoring and generosity.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
A celebration of life will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, May 28, 2013, at the Village Presbyterian Church, Prairie Village, KS.  Private inurnment will take place at a later date.

In lieu of flowers memorials are suggested to any of the following:  Kansas Wildscape Foundation (The Fred White Memorial Project); Rainbows United; Footprints-Royals’ Charities; the Kansas City Hospice House; or a children‘s charity of choice and may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary, 120 W. 13th St., Lawrence, KS  66044. 

22 Condolences

  1. valjean parker schroll on May 17, 2013 at 8:42 pm

    ill be there Barb!

  2. Alan Peel on May 17, 2013 at 10:09 pm

    Thank you to one of the best baseball coaches I ever had. I will always remember our practices at Franklin Park every summer. Thank you for everything, Fred.

    Alan Peel

  3. Jesse Nixon on May 18, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    My sincere sympathy for your family.I’m sorry I never got a chance to meet him, he will be missed by many it sounds like!Big hugs, Jesse

  4. Patty Stockton on May 18, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    Today my dad told me about Fred’s passing. Andy and I are sorry for your loss. You and your family will be in our thoughts and prayers. Delta Love, Patty

  5. Shirley Manning Triguero on May 18, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    To Marilyn and Family,
    Sorry to hear of your loss. I remember Jack and JoEllyn but didn’t meet Fred. You have such a wonderful family and I hope if I get back to IL this summer I will get a chance to see you.

  6. Judy Jones Moorhouse on May 18, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    My heart goes out to you and your son, thinking of you during this time, sending you prayers, and lots of love!
    Stan and Judy Jones Moorhouse

  7. THOMAS BOLDS on May 19, 2013 at 2:25 am

    I met thisman through the KC Royals Fantasy Camp, really enjoyed talking to him and appreciate all that he did for us fans..R.I.P

  8. LaDonna Sanders on May 19, 2013 at 8:38 am

    I was a student at KState when Fred was involved there, then I lived in Topeka when Fred was on WIBW, and I followed the Royals when Fred was involved with them. He was, without question, the best at sportscasting. The. Best. The quality of his voice, the rhythm of his words, I would rather listen to him than a thousand Denny Matthews.
    I am sorry for your loss and the loss to the sports community.

  9. Tom Sprenkel on May 19, 2013 at 9:44 am

    What sad news it was when I heard that Mr. White had died. To say I knew Mr. White is that I did not know him personally but, yet I knew him from listening to him hundreds of times. It all started in the sixties when I listened to high school basketball, K-St basketball and then later college Big 8, Big 12 and on and on. I really felt at home when he and Matthews broadcast the Royals. After Mr. White left the broadcast booth I was at Stroud’s on 85th St. and heard this voice. It was Mr. White. I went to him and expressed my sorrow about him no longer in the booth. Today in his obituary I read that he and his wife owned KRSL AM/FM radio in Russell. When I was a senior broadcast student at Fort Hays State I worked part-time for Fred Thompson who then owned KRSL AM/FM. I will always think of Mr. White as the broadcast king.

  10. Tom Woolery on May 19, 2013 at 11:34 am

    First , my deepest condolences to his family.

    As a life long Royals fan—-his voice was— ROYALS BASEBALL!!

    Fred–say hello to Dick (Howser)Joe (Burke-Royals president) Splitt/Quiz and Mr and Mrs Kauffman!!

    I meet once on the concourse at Kauffman–a wonderful person!

  11. Bob Basile on May 19, 2013 at 11:49 am

    I’ll always treasure my time with Fred during the Raycom Big 8 basketball games we worked together. He was a true professional and a gentleman always. I looked forward to all my games with Fred White.

  12. Russ on May 19, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    I like the Royals current broadcasters just fine but there will never be another Denny and Fred. Many years ago I was traveling the Ozarks with a friend that brought a friend of his from the East coast. After listening to 2 innings of the broadcast he remarked that these guys were the best he ever heard. I remember Fred jumping in to broadcast when Ryans voice would not let him go. All was right in my world listening to Fred broadcast and I am very thankful for the audio replays I keep hearing. It is past time that Fred be inducted into the Royals Hall of Fame. God must have needed a broadcaster and he chose one of the best in the business. Upon learning of Freds passing I calculated that I must have heard over 1500 games with Fred. I will forever appreciate hearing Fred for all those years. May God bless Fred White.

  13. Bob & Pat Fromme on May 20, 2013 at 3:48 pm


    Pat and I are so sad to learn of Fred’s passing. We were close friends for many years. Early on we were competitors, then we worked together for 18-20 years.

    We will miss him, too.

  14. Marc Salle and Briana Beuke on May 20, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    Dear Barbara, we were tremendously saddened to hear of Fred’s passing. He was the most enjoyable and courtly of men, source of one amusing story after another, a man of self-effacing and humble greatness. And the voice, like a smoothe and peaceful river on a sunny afternoon. He’ll be missed. You and he are in our thoughts. Sincerely, Marc and Briana

  15. Tom Nichols on May 21, 2013 at 2:32 am

    For those of us who grew up before the advent of cable the AM radio was your connection to your favorite sports teams. Kansas State and KC Royals games of my youth will always be framed by Fred’s great calls and understated talent. My sincere sympathy to the family.

    Tom Nichols

  16. Tim & Deb McKenney on May 21, 2013 at 9:55 am

    As owners of small market stations, Deb & I were always amazed at the kindness we were shown by Fred. He was ALWAYS available when we needed help with anything, concerning the Royals or our stations. He even came to Fort Scott once and took us to dinner, just the chat. He was our guest as speaker at our Chamber banquet. He never said “no”. It was a blessing to know him.

  17. Y Sims on May 21, 2013 at 11:09 am

    May the sorrow that you’re feeling today be eased by the sweetness of precious memories. It seems so unfair that death would have the power to take away someone you love. And when it happens, the thought of never being able to talk to, laugh with, or hold your loved one can be most difficult to bear. The pain is not necessarily erased by being told that your loved one is up in heaven, as if God (Psalm 83:18) doesn’t care about our pain. Our Heavenly Father want his children to enjoy life and live, He made a promise to do away with death at Revelation 21:4 “And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. At these times, may you turn to God’s Word for comfort. For further comfort and to know why we get sick or grow old and die please go to

  18. Jon Bauer on May 22, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    Dear John,

    Our thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family.

    Jon and Michelle Bauer

  19. Johnny Overby on May 27, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Sorry to hear about Fred’s passing. He was one of my champions (instead of the booers) while I referred the KU-KState basketball games. He was great guy and will be sadly missed.

  20. Sherry on May 28, 2013 at 8:23 am

    It always impressed me that after all your years together, you two always seemed to have so much to talk about to each other. Fred always had that infectious smile for everyone when you would come in. I (we)will miss him and his smile tremendously.
    Sherry and the gang at Stoud’s

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