Chicago sportscaster Laurence Holmes, center, was welcomed to the Vikings Baseball fundraiser by John McCarthy, left, coach of the team, and Steve Anderson, president of the Vikings Baseball Booster Club. (Marilyn Thomas/H-F Chronicle)
Education, Feature, Sports

Sportscaster recognizes community’s support for Vikings baseball

Sports broadcaster Laurence Holmes said he could feel the positive vibes in the room Saturday, Jan. 27, when he addressed supporters of Homewood-Flossmoor High Vikings Baseball at their annual fundraiser.

“To walk into this place and see the type of job you’re doing to support a baseball program is top notch. I love what the actual word ‘community’ seems to mean to everyone in this room,” he said, “and the amount of time and money that you’re putting in for these young men is really admirable.

Chicago sportscaster Laurence Holmes, center, was welcomed to the Vikings Baseball fundraiser by John McCarthy, left, coach of the team, and Steve Anderson, president of the Vikings Baseball Booster Club. (Marilyn Thomas/H-F Chronicle)
Chicago sportscaster Laurence Holmes, center, was welcomed to the Vikings Baseball fundraiser by John McCarthy, left, coach of the team, and Steve Anderson, president of the Vikings Baseball Booster Club. (Marilyn Thomas/H-F Chronicle)

“What facilities these young men have, to have the opportunity to play on (the new field) is incredible and a testament to the support the community continues to give the high school,” said Holmes, a 1993 graduate of H-F.

He applauded the parents and supporters for their “understanding that what you pour into these young men, they will have an opportunity to do great things. You’re doing the right things. You’re giving them a launching pad to greatness, and that’s all that anyone ever wants is someone to support them in a way so that they can be great.”

Holmes, a broadcaster on WSCR “The Score” and “House of L” podcaster and football postgame coverage host and basketball game announcer, said he’s always loved sports. 

For him, the support that Vikings ball players get was duplicated for him at WHFH Radio, a 1,500-watt radio station run by students. Holmes had his Federal Communications Commission (FCC) license by the time he was 16.

Laurence Holmes, host on WSCR "The Score," addresses supporters of H-F Vikings baseball at an annual fundraiser for the program on Saturday, Jan, 27. (Marilyn Thomas/H-F Chronicle)
Laurence Holmes, host on WSCR “The Score,” addresses supporters of H-F Vikings baseball at an annual fundraiser for the program on Saturday, Jan, 27. (Marilyn Thomas/H-F Chronicle)

Today he’s proud to say he’s part of the “H-F mafia in media” in Chicago, including Jason Benetti, the play-by-play announcer for the Chicago White Sox; Chuck Garfein, host of the pregame and postgame shows for the Chicago White Sox and anchor for NBC Sports; Amanda Kaschube, director of content for sports and audience strategy at the Chicago Tribune; WGN-TV anchor Ben Bradley; and himself.

“The H-F connection around media is a big deal. I say this with absolutely no humility. I don’t care if you went to (the University of) Missouri or Syracuse or Amherst or Fordham or USC, there’s no better training to work in broadcasting than what we went through as freshmen sophomores, juniors and seniors at H-F,” he said, giving credit to retired teacher Bob Comstock and assistant Megan Tipton.

“I was put in a better position than most because I worked at WHFH,” Holmes said.

He wasn’t certain what his path would be when he graduated but came to realize that attending DePaul University was a smart decision. Between H-F and DePaul, Holmes said he had the background and the confidence he needed to get a job in broadcasting.

Today, as a part-time instructor at DePaul, he tells his students that life will come with lots of choices. He stresses that students shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help or advice, and build a strong network of friends because they will hold you up and help you along the way.

Steve Anderson, president of the Vikings Baseball Boosters Club, saluted the volunteers who worked with him on the event at Balagio Ristorante — Jim Lund, Becki Calomino, Kate Saunders, Terri Waterman, Marcus Bernath and Laurie Anderson.

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