Posted: Feb 5, 2012 6:28 PM by Paul Kavanaugh
Updated: Feb 11, 2012 9:28 AM
It is with great sadness that News 5 announces the death of longtime Sports Director, Lee Douglas.
Douglas, 57, died today in Pueblo, after being hospitalized Saturday with kidney problems, according to friends.
Douglas had a long career in televison and radio in southern Colorado.
"Douglas Lee Cooley graduated from Pueblo's Centennial High School in ‘73 and then from CSU Pueblo in '77," said southern Colorado broadcaster and colleague, Bob Bosche. "Reversing his middle & first names, his professional name became Lee Douglas." Bosche said.
"As a member of Pikes Peak Broadcasters, most of us knew him, many of us worked with him and all of us liked him," Bosche said. "From his early days at Pueblo's KDZA to his long tenure at KOAA, Lee always brought his "A" game. Two of his great passions were his love of music (especially ‘oldies') and of course sports."
Douglas started part time at KDZA radio in Pueblo, when he was still at CSU, said friend and colleague, Nick Donovan. "Lee got into the business when he was still taking Mass Com classes at CSU Pueblo," Nonovan recalled.
"What people might not know is that during his career he was the Assistant Manager for the City of Pueblo and the Assistant State Fair Manager in the 1980's," Donovan said.
And playing on his well-known "nice-guy" image?
"I used to call him Richie Cunningham," Donovan said, referring to the Ron Howard character in the TV sitcom, "Happy Days. "He always did things by the book."
Douglas began his TV career at KOAA in 1979 and became Sports Director in 2000.
Douglas covered all kinds of sports in Colorado and won numerous awards, from the Colorado Broadcasters Association to Best Local Sportcaster honors from the "Pueblo Chieftain, the "Gazette" and the "Colorado Springs Independent."
Lee's incredible career, his contribution to sports and his connection to the southern Colorado community he loved will be featured tonight at 9:30 on News 5.