By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere
Norman J. Vargo, 85, of North Huntingdon passed away peacefully on Friday, May 3, 2019 after an amazing life that saw him go from the rugged Steel Valley to various places around the world. Born in Munhall on March 23, 1934, he was the doting husband of 61 years to his sweetheart Audrey (Cawley) Vargo and the loving father of Mark (Sharon) Vargo, of North Huntingdon; Michael (Brian) Vargo, of Mt. Joy; Sandee Vargo, of North Huntingdon and Gary (Taryn) Vargo, of Irwin. His legacy lives on through his grandchildren Christopher (Tiffany) Vargo, of North Huntingdon; Sean (Erin) Vargo, of North Versailles and Tennyson Vargo of Irwin.
Stormin’ Norman, as he is known both locally and nationally, was the Sports Editor of The McKeesport Daily News covering six Super Bowls, two world series, four MLB All-Star Games, three NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs, two US Opens, three world championship boxing matches, Pitt’s incredible run to the 1976 National Championship, the 1980 Olympic Games in Lake Placid, and countless local and scholastic sporting events.
He covered the Pittsburgh Steelers for 27 seasons-a total of 586 games including five of their Super Bowl appearances and the NFL American Bowl Games in Tokyo, Barcelona, Dublin, and Montreal. He witnessed some of the greatest sports moments in history including the Immaculate Reception as well as the last Steelers Game at Forbes Field. He authored the book Stadium Stories-Pittsburgh Steelers and contributed to multiple books written about the Pittsburgh sports scene. He also wrote for the USA Today for 20 years.
He was the 1977 Luke Quay Memorial Award winner and in 1986 was presented with the Bob Prince Memorial Award. He was inducted into the Western Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 1999 and the McKeesport Sports Hall of Fame in 2001. As a multiple-sport high school athlete himself, he was a staunch supporter of local athletes and covered many remarkable homegrown careers.
On eight occasions, his writings were read before the United States Congress. He was the past-president of the Pittsburgh Chapters of the Baseball Writers Association of America, Professional Football Writers Association of America, and the Professional Hockey Writers Association. He was also a voting member of the Baseball Hall of Fame, the Heisman Trophy (New York Athletic Club), the Maxwell Club, the All-NFL Team, and the Associated Press College Football and Basketball All-America teams.
He was one of the original members of North Huntingdon EMS Rescue 8. He was a veteran of the US Army. Friends will be received, Monday, May 6, from 2-4 and 6-8PM at the Ott Funeral Home, Inc. 805 Pennsylvania Ave, Irwin. A funeral service will take place Tuesday, May 7, at 11AM in the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, donations in his honor can be made to the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, or Action for Animals in Latrobe.
To plant a memorial tree in honor of Norman J. Vargo, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
Originally published May 04, 2019.
"Helen Brulja" || "Edward M. Lis"