Jeff Dickerson, who covered Bears for ESPN, loses battle with colon cancer

Jeff Dickerson, a Buffalo Grove High School graduate who covered the Chicago Bears for two decades for ESPN, died Tuesday from complications from colon cancer. He was 44.

According to Kevin Seifert, a staff writer and ESPN, "Dickerson died at the same hospice care facility that his wife, Caitlin, died in two years ago. Caitlin Dickerson had undergone treatment for melanoma and its complications for eight years."

"Our hearts ache as we share that our teammate & friend, Jeff Dickerson, has passed away. JD was an amazing son, husband, father & friend. We will miss his smile, his love for his family & his love for all the fans of Chicago. You will live in our hearts forever. We love you JD," read a tweet from ESPN AM-1000.

Dickerson played football, basketball and baseball all four years at Buffalo Grove before graduating in 1996.

Dickerson told The Daily Herald in 2014 that for someone used to being around locker rooms it was different as the Bears beat reporter for ESPN Radio's WMVP when he made his initial trips into the locker room at Soldier Field.

"I got a taste of it my first year at the Score, where they would send me to Soldier Field to book guests for all of their shows," Dickerson said. "I thought, 'Wow,' because I never went to Bears games when I was growing up.

"It was exhilarating. There was so much excitement and so much action."

On his way to becoming a broadcaster, Dickerson said in that 2014 interview he also loved writing and originally thought that would be his direction toward a career in sports.

"Then the weirdest thing happened. The older I got ... I was always selected to do the readings at church. Whenever there was a public speaking requirement I was chosen for it.

"I learned at a pretty young age to not have any fear about speaking in front of big crowds, so that helped."

Dickerson went to the University of Illinois and as a senior did radio broadcasts of East Central Illinois high school football and basketball games. A summer internship in 1999 at The Score started opening doors and he was offered a part-time producer's job after graduating from Illinois.

After moving to ESPN Dickerson eventually began covering the Bears.

"I'm working in my hometown and my parents and family are close by," he said in the interview seven years ago. "I'm so fortunate to be able to do what I want and to do it in a place where I want to live. How many people can say that?"

Dickerson is survived by son Parker; and his parents, George and Sandy Dickerson.

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