As news of the death of the legendary Buffalo Sabres play-by-play man spreads around Buffalo, Western New York, and the entire world, the love and gratitude that people have for Rick Jeanneret is becoming extremely evident.

You don't have to go any farther than downtown Buffalo to see exactly how much Buffalo loved and admired RJ.

Rick Jeanneret Passes Away at the Age of 81

If you haven't heard by now, Rick Jeanneret has passed away from multi-organ failure after a two year health battle.

RJ started his role as the play-by-play man for the Buffalo Sabres in just their second season in 1971 and was in the press box for every season thereafter until 2022 when he eventually retired.

In his career, there are literally hundreds of amazing calls that he made over the length of his tenure. He has literally become part of the fabric of Buffalo and Western New York.

However, his legacy goes far beyond War Memorial Arena and the Key Bank Center.

I Remember That Time RJ Helped Me With My Career

If there is one about 716 that I love is how tight-knit our community is. Even though Buffalo has shrunken over the years, it's still very much a relatively large city and still the 2nd largest in New York State. However, in a lot of ways Buffalo is like a big small town. It's not uncommon to run into the most famous people in Buffalo at Tim Hortons, Wegmans, or any of the other places we congregate at.

That smallness that is Western New York really permeates down into the core of who we are, and it's something that learned at a very young age.

I've had the benefit of learning radio and journalism from some of the people to have ever done it in the area and more than 20 years ago, when I was a bright-eyed want-to-be broadcaster in his early 20s who was struggling to find consistent work in the business, I had a chance encounter with RJ.

Before a Sabres Game in the late-90s, I had the chance to sit down with RJ when I wasn't feeling too great about my prospects of advancing a career in broadcasting.

RJ could have easily shushed me to the side to head to work, but he didn't. He gave some tips and pointers that help me to this day.

Thank you Rick Jeanneret for everything that you've done for all of us in Buffalo.

Top 10 Most Underrated Buffalo Sabres of All-Time

7 Moments We Want To Erase From Buffalo Sabres' History

These moments hurt our souls, made us cry, and we wish they never happened...but now that they have, we will never forget them.

More From 93.7 WBLK