The CSU Athletic Department lost a member of the family yesterday, and Saturdays with the football team next fall will not be the same.
Rich Bircumshaw, the voice of the Rams for the last eight years, passed away at the age of 54 following complications from a stroke suffered in his home.
For those who didn’t know Bircumshaw, he was regarded as a consummate professional with a quirky, self-deprecating sense of humor and an ability to make anyone he talked to feel like the most important person in the room.
For those who did know him, he was most often a friend.
“We have lost a dear friend in Rich,” men’s basketball head coach Tim Miles said. “It was very apparent, something that I noticed right after I met him, that it wasn’t the job that mattered to Rich, but it was the Rams family that he truly cared about. When we won, he felt like he had won. And when we lost, he lost. Most of all, he was a tremendous person and a great friend to all of us in the program.”
As a football and basketball announcer, Bircumshaw could paint a picture with his words, taking Ram fans closer to the action than a television screen could. As a supporter of CSU athletics, he was unparalleled.
Bircumshaw volunteered as an emcee at dozens of Athletic Department events every year, in addition to hosting a weekly coach’s show each football and men’s basketball season. Head football coach Steve Fairchild called him CSU’s “No. 1 fan.”
The editorial board would like to express our deepest condolences to the Bircumshaw family, the athletic department and anyone who came in contact with Rich in his much-too short time.
To the voice of the Rams: Thank you for the memories; you will be deeply missed.