Lanny Lee Larson, affectionately known as Tom Larson, a stalwart in the world of sports broadcasting, passed away this week in Virginia at the age of 84. Larson’s family confirmed his demise, revealing that he had been battling cancer.

Who is Tom Larson?

Tom Larson’s illustrious sports broadcasting career, spanning nearly four decades, left an indelible mark, particularly in the realms of Boston Bruins and Boston Red Sox coverage. Originally hailing from Illinois and Lansing, Michigan, Larson ventured into the Boston sports scene in the late 1960s.

Joining the Boston Bruins television crew during the 1969-70 season, Larson became the face of pregame and postgame studio shows. His tenure coincided with the Bruins’ remarkable triumphs in 1970 and 1972, clinching championships that etched the team into hockey history.

One of Larson’s most enduring legacies was his vow to keep his beard unshaved until the Bruins secured another Stanley Cup. Initially grown during the mid-70s, the beard became a symbol of resilience and loyalty. Despite facing criticism, Larson’s pledge endured for an astonishing 39 years until the Bruins finally broke the championship drought against the Vancouver Canucks.

Reflecting on the unexpected longevity of his commitment, Larson admitted, “I had no idea it was going to be 30 years.”

In the 1980s, Larson expanded his influence as the sports director at WHDH radio before joining the New England Sports Network (NESN). At NESN, he continued his role as a television host, this time for the Boston Red Sox. Larson’s contributions extended beyond the screen, as he also served as a contributing writer.

Tom Larson’s impact on Boston sports broadcasting remains eternally linked with the triumphs and tribulations of the Bruins and Red Sox.