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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Former Merced Sun-Star sports editor dies in auto accident


    Former Merced Sun-Star sports editor Harry Blauvelt was killed Monday morning in a freak auto-truck collision on a bridge near Baltimore, Md. He was 70.

    Blauvelt served as the Sun-Star’s sports editor from 1969 until 1985. He left the Sun-Star and spent about four years covering sports for the Honolulu Star-Bulletin. He then went to work for USA Today, covering professional golf until he retired about eight years ago. He was a longtime acquaintance of famed pro golfer Tiger Woods.

    Sgt. Jonathan Green of the Maryland Transportation Authority Police told the Baltimore Sun that Blauvelt’s 2001 Honda Accord broke down about 10:25 a.m. in the right lane of the Bay Bridge over Chesapeake Bay and was struck by a 2003 International big rig.

    Police reports said Blauvelt had gotten out of his disabled car. The truck, driven by a 63-year-old man, struck the rear of the car, which then hit Blauvelt and pushed him over the concrete bridge barrier into the water more than 52 feet below. Blauvelt was pronounced dead at Anne Arundel Medical Center near Baltimore. A transportation authority marine boat retrieved Blauvelt’s body from the bay.

    An accident reconstruction team is investigating the accident, only the second time in 60 years someone was sent over the bridge as a result of a crash.

    Butch Hughes of Merced knew Blauvelt since he covered Merced College sports for the Sun-Star. He said he talked with Blauvelt several times a week on the telephone but hadn’t seen him in person for 15 years. He was heading home at the time of the accident.

    “”We kept up a steady relationship,”” Hughes said. “”He (Harry) was enjoying life. He sounded good and healthy.””

    Merced College athletic director Steve Cassady kept in touch with Blauvelt since he left Merced.

    “”He was one of a kind,”” Cassady said. “”There were not two people like him. He was a loyal friend in his own way and a competent news person.””

    Blauvelt lived in Chester on Kent Island and had a beautiful home on Chesapeake Bay, Hughes said. He delighted in watching professional hockey and was a longtime movie aficionado.

    “”He was a real character and a good person. It’s just a real tragedy,”” Hughes said.

    Blauvelt is survived by his wife, Ellen.

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