Former Daily News Writer Conlin Dies in Florida – Phillies Nation

Former Daily News Writer Conlin Dies in Florida

According to multiple reports – and first tweeted by former Phillies beat writer Randy Miller – former Philadelphia Daily News writer Bill Conlin has died in Largo, FL at the age of 79.

Conlin was awarded the J.G. Taylor Spink Award in 2011 following a Hall of Fame career as a baseball writer, but shortly after was alleged to have molested young family members decades before. Those accusations were made by Conlin’s niece, Kelley Blanchet, a prosecutor in Atlantic City. Deadspin broke the story in 2011.

Conlin was a graduate of Temple University and worked for the Evening Bulletin before joining the Daily News in 1965. He joined the Phillies beat in 1966 and became a columnist in 1987. After his retirement, Conlin briefly wrote for our own Jay Floyd’s website, Phoul Ballz.





  1. anthony

    January 9, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    Grew yp reading Conlin accusations ruined hall of fame man

  2. SEEK

    January 9, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    I used to love reading his columns.

  3. Hopper

    January 9, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    So tarnished by those allegations that he didn’t really deny. Told Daulerio that he considered suicide.

    Favorite Conlinism was from one of his appearances on “The Sports Reporters”. Charles Barkley had remarked that the only reason Mike Gminski was still on the Sixers was because he was white. Conlin said, “Charles has a problem. He’s a compulsive truth-teller.”

  4. Phillie from Birthday

    January 9, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    Wonderful writer with evil actions. Shows that people can do goods things and still be scum.

  5. stains

    January 9, 2014 at 8:06 pm

    His life’s work is gone. He will only be known as a fat perv.

  6. DannyT

    January 9, 2014 at 10:42 pm

    Great writer, sadly troubled. When he is King of the World

  7. lew

    January 9, 2014 at 11:06 pm

    enjoyed his articulate sarcasm. very insightful and dedicated. dont condone personal behavior

  8. Jay Floyd

    January 10, 2014 at 1:21 am

    I swapped emails with Bill a bunch last year after he wrote me and complimented my work. After multiple declines to appear on my Podcast or contribute to this or my site, he allowed me to post a rant of his on last season.

    Innocent until proven guilty is a very important thing. With that in mind, I was honored to have been complimented by him and his emails to me were always tremendously interesting and always about baseball…like reading my own private articles.

    He wrote to me without ever introducing himself or identifying who he was or what he did. After the second email he sent, simply as Bill, a fan of the minors, I recognized his AOL address, which used to appear in his articles for folks that wanted to send feedback. “Bill1Chair” was still the address he used.

    I learned that he remained in touch with loads of people throughout the industry, so I wasn’t alone or special in exchanging thoughts and stories with him, but it was still very cool and meant something to me. He had so much knowledge and talent. It’s sad to see that lost now.

    • DadsInKeyLargo

      January 10, 2014 at 10:38 am

      Jay, I also swapped emails with him. Bill was a close friend of Edwin Pope. I guess the greats gravitate to one another.

      Allegations aside, this is about a great writer. An individual thinker unlike many writers today that seem to spew out dribble provided to them by the teams they cover.

      • Mike

        January 10, 2014 at 4:46 pm

        I did not wish any harm on you or jay but jay did bring it up . That writing and what he did goes out the window when you molest kids you have dad on your handle do you have kids ?

        So let’s say the guy who shot up the school kids in ct was a brilliant carpenter would we ever bring his name up about his skill after he did that ? Different levels yes but no way would you talk about molesters and murderers for what there skill was again . he got off because a hole in the legal system if you rape or molest a little kid there should be no such thing

        He never tried to clear his name he ran and hid

      • Mike

        January 10, 2014 at 4:52 pm

        I have kids so it strikes a nerve and anger with me when these type
        People get away with stuff that’s all

        She came out his niece who is a prosecutor in jersey because he did a story on Sandusky then the rest came out after her I guess it brought a lot of emotion back for them

        But it was too late statute of limitations ran out I know myself if I was accused of something horrible I did not do I would not go run on vacation and never speak up to clear my name

    • Mike

      January 10, 2014 at 3:38 pm

      He is a child molesting pos. the statue of limitations ran out or he would been charged with 6 kids he molested he never came out and said he didn’t do it

      He said now she wants to come out 40 years later and Sandusky me before it was said who it even was so he knew he is a scumbag great that you love him so much though because he was such a great writer that trumps all right ?!! Hope you don’t have kids

      • DadsInKeyLargo

        January 10, 2014 at 3:59 pm

        Thank you for your warm wishes for Jay and myself.
        Come back often Mike. Great contribution.

        We weren’t talking about his humanity, but his writing.

  9. Lefty

    January 10, 2014 at 5:47 am

    Always enjoyed reading Conlin. RIP

  10. Tom Richards III

    January 10, 2014 at 7:18 am

    I grew up reading Bill Conlon articles on the Phils. He was typically spot on in his analysis of pretty much anything related to baseball. I was shocked, saddened really, with the later accusations about his personal life. I hope he is at peace.

  11. Ryne Duren

    January 10, 2014 at 8:46 am

    I always enjoyed reading his articles. May he rest in peace. As far as the accusations. Innocent until proven guilty. What ever happened with the accusations anyway. It always seems as though if somebody wants to hurt another person for what ever reason or what ever ax they have to grind. Just ruin them by throwing a molestation accusation at them. I think there was a lot more to the story on her side. From what I understand his family didn’t like him.
    It also ruined Herman Cains chances of becoming a presidential candidate! With the accusations of the white women that were made. They sort of disappeared once he dropped out of the race. If Colin’s accuser and Cains accuser’s continued on with the accusations then maybe there’d be some credence to them. I think for whatever reason some people are so hateful that they would stoop to accuse people of horrible things to destroy them. And in this political correct country we now live in. As soon as you accuse someone of something like these two men were. Well everybody jumps on the bandwagon and they’re done! And ironically the accusers go away! hummmmmmmmmmmmm!

    • schmenkman

      January 10, 2014 at 11:06 am

      Ryne, as I’ve heard it it was the statute of limitations that made them “go away”, and there were, I believe, a half dozen or so accusers.

      Innocent until proven guilty is certainly the system we live in, but just repeating that phrase to sum up the situation is also, I think, an insult to his accusers, who deserve no less of an open mind than Conlin himself.

      • Ryne Duren

        January 12, 2014 at 11:24 am

        Schmenk I understand the statute of limitations. First of all I said go away because I think that people who accuse others of horrendous things that don’t come out “before the statute” of limitation is up. Give me question as to why they didn’t. I understand the trauma and all that. People handle it in different ways. I for one would have took him to task asap. And I think if I remember, the parents could have stopped it too If it was happening. That was the hardest part that I had with the story. If that was my child? Conlin would’ve been in a world of hurt. And if they were my parents? Well….. And if the accusers were right then he should have had his come to him. They can only blame themselves for keeping quiet.
        And second of all Schmenk I could give a rats behind about insulting the accusers! They deserve what they get for being quiet. Do I feel bad for them if it happened Yes!
        Actually I feel more resentment to the parents in this whole thing. Not that I resent the accusers. The bottom line is this. If Conlin did it? Then he’s exactly where he belongs! His maker will take care of business. As far as me insulting the accusers. They had plenty of opportunity over the years to take the parents to task for whatever Mr Conlin did or didn’t do.
        And they chose to be quiet or told to be quiet by the parents.

  12. Mike

    January 10, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    I hope he was in a lot of pain and took forever to die he is a molester who got off because the kids who became adults were embarrassed and missed the statue of limitations . but when he did a article on Sandusky his niece a prosecutor decided it was enough and at least put him out there along with 5 others that came forward

    Whoever is praising him for writing need to get your morals straight or maybe you condone mesting kids too !

    Hey did he ever fight for his name and deny it ? Nope he didn’t he went and hid like the fat coward he is. If there is a hell I hope him and every molester burn in it forever in pain

    • Double Trouble Del

      January 10, 2014 at 10:42 pm

      I am a father of an eight year daughter, a baseball fan and retired from the practice of law as well. I appreciated Conlin and his talent with the pen, his insight into baseball and the men who played the game. Can I think of him the same way after the molestation accusations surfaced? I have to answer no. Really, however, there is no one person who is outside of the immediate circle of accusers and accused who can really know what transpired so many years ago. Actions and events are blurred, memories are suppressed and others are enhanced, this is a regrettable attribute of so many molestation cases. This is why there are statute of limitations, to keep evidence and testimony fresh in the mind of accuser and accused.

  13. Ken Bland

    January 11, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    I wonder how many even indirectly affected by molestation events even attempt to find basis in innocent until proven guilty and try to separate Bill Conlin the writer from Bill Conlin, the accused. That would seem a difficult step to take, and necessitate a position of being appreciative of Conlin.

    That said, I suppose it puts me squarely in the position of never even indirectly affected by it to even admit I found it just plain sad that practically all media accounts of his passing ran quickly to the word disgraced in their stories. But, if the shoe fits, I guess it is what it is. I guess it’ll be about the same when OJ dies…either buried or forgotten will be his football (especially), and his commercial spokesman skills. Which isn’t wrong, but sad.

    I’ll just close by citing a description of Conlin I used frequently to describe him, prior to the barrage of allegartions, when I chose to abstain from commenting on him. He was, and always will be the best baseball beat writer that ever has, or ever will live. As a reader, I was in his grip. I found it easy to escape that grip on his work as a columnist. He often wrote of subjects that I was minimally at best interested in. But when he did write about the era in which he was up close and personal about the time he covered the Phils on either the way up, or at their Glory Days of Peak, I was right there. Television work, radio interview appearances were platforms stirring pretty neutral reaction

    The end of a life isn’t necessarily a sad thing. Superior skills, achievement, or ability can still bring about a summation of sorts that still makes you feel warm and fuzzy. It’s truly sad that there’s no comfortable place at all for that with his passing. You just can’t help but lend more credence to where there’s smoke, there’s fire than innocent until proven guilty. I feel more urge to empathize from a distance about the lives that he might have affected with his alleged actions than the beat job so appreciated as a single entity.

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