Vaughn McClure, a reporter who covered the Atlanta Falcons for ESPN, has reportedly passed away near his Atlanta home. He was 48.
A former Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times sports writer, McClure joined ESPN in 2013 to cover the NFL and cover the Falcons as a beat writer.
He covered Atlanta’s Super Bowl LI run in 2017, where they lost to the New England Patriots. He also contributed to ESPN’s television and radio coverage of the Falcons and the NFL as well.
“We all loved Vaughn,” said John Pluym, ESPN’s senior deputy editor for digital NFL coverage. “He had a heart of gold. He was so helpful to our reporters. In the last few hours, we’ve heard so many stories about how Vaughn had helped them with a story or how he put in a good word for them with a coach or player.”
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He added: “Talking to Vaughn on the phone was always a joy. I loved how you could just sense the excitement in his voice for being able to cover the Falcons for ESPN. We will all miss him greatly. And I’ll end this the way Vaughn ended every phone call with a colleague: ‘Appreciate you. Love you.’ We all loved him, too.”
The Falcons also issued a statement. “We are saddened to learn of the passing of ESPN’s Vaughn McClure. He was an earnest, thoughtful reporter who had a passion for his craft and the relationships he held. He will be missed dearly and we are holding his family, friends and associates in our thoughts and prayers.”
McClure previously covered the Bulls for the Chicago Tribune. He also covered Notre Dame football for the Chicago Sun-Times and Fresno State basketball for The Fresno Bee.
A native of Chicago, McClure graduated from Northern Illinois University in 1994.
It’s currently unclear how McClure passed away.