Monday 24 October 2011

30 Dick Shatto

A salute to The 62

Dick Shatto: While researching the whereabouts of the Toronto Sun's original 62, we realized the Dick Shatto mentioned in Ron Poulton's Life in a Word Factory as a Day Oner was THE Dick Shatto, the ex-Argo star. Doug Creighton announced Shatto would be joining the Sun team as national advertising manager 10 days before the tabloid was launched. The Ohio-born football player had been a record-setting Toronto Argonaut for 12 seasons, 1954 to 1965. When hired by the Sun, he said: "It's a big challenge. There's no way to go but up." That is the only mention of Shatto in Jean Sonmor's The Little Paper That Grew book. Not much else has been written about his apparently brief stay at the Sun. Internet sources say he was a CFL colour commentator on CTV from 1970 to 1973 and was the Argo's GM for three seasons starting in 1976. He was named "All-Time Argo" in 1996 and in 1975 was elected to the Canadian Football Hall of Fame. After he died in Florida on Feb. 4, 2003, it was reported his ashes were spread where Toronto's Exhibition Stadium once stood. 

If you are a Toronto Sun Day Oner and have a bio or memories to share, please email with a photo before Nov. 1.

If you are one of the hundreds of men and women in all departments who followed The 62 and want to share your memories of the Toronto Sun, email TSF.


  1. From Day Oner John Iaboni:

    Getting a "celebrity" guy like Dick Shatto was a nice addition for the fledgling Sun because in that era, with no Major League Baseball team and no National Basketball Association team, Toronto pro sports consisted of the Leafs and Argos, with both receiving enormous coverage.

    Dick was the Argos star and a fan favourite in an era when the Argos struggled and his hire at The Sun not only capitalized on his name, but gave us staffers an indication that our management was going to bring some sizzle to the newspaper steak. At least that's the way I pereceived it.

    Dick wasn't with us very long, but his goodwill was evident when our "Bad News Bears" rag-tag Sun softball team would play in the Press League, or make fund-raising appearances.

    People knew who he was and he'd frequently sign autographs - and on top of that he was the best darned athlete we had ... smooth as silk, great range at shortstop - a Major Leaguer who gracefully accepted he was playing with a bunch of never-wases and had a lot of fun with us.

    Dick was a classy individual in all facets that I dealt with him and it was a privilege to get to know him as one of us at The Sun.

    Your bio on Sun Family is accurate from other details I've heard and seen about Dick.

  2. From Day Oner John Downing:

    Shatto was huge as a football player. Classy! Getting him at the Sun was a real coup. There was no big fight about him leaving, in fact he left without much notice, and I never heard of him being talked about later by Doug Creighton. I suspect he realized early on, like in the second or third week, that this wasn't for him. I don't recall ever seeing him in the now legendary Eclipse Building. I'm sure in the first few days, he gave us credibility since he was one of the most famous athletes in Toronto.

    john downing