GORHAM – Bruce Glasier knows how the end will come Friday night. One last briefing of the day’s sports highlights to an unseen television audience. One more sprinkling of facetious barbs or mild sarcasm. A final goodbye to replace so many good nights.

“Then I’ll go have what we call quitters cake and a little ice cream,” said Glasier. “The company is planning something bigger, a party. You know what? I don’t need that.”

A career that spans five decades beginning with typewriters and ending with smart phones ends with his retirement as sports director at WCSH-Channel 6. He is 67. “Want to see my new Medicare card? Just got it. Look.”

For 35 years he followed the advice of his mentor and friend, Frank Fixaris, who also happened to be his rival at WGME-Channel 13. Be yourself, said Fixaris, who died in 2006. You’ll be fine. Glasier did and he was.

He took a memorable line from a Clint Eastwood movie and let it become his guide. “A man’s got to know his limitations,” said the Harry Callahan character at the end of ‘Magnum Force.” Glasier could relate.

“Look at me. I’m not the big, handsome stud from ESPN.”

He was the short, stocky neighbor from down your street or any street who once dreamed of playing for the Celtics. He tripped over his words sometimes. He got his left mixed up with his right occasionally. He wasn’t burdened by an ego, and that helped him laugh at himself.

That was his appeal, along with his understanding of his audience. Glasier grew up in Portland. The Portland area always has been his home. Decades-long friends and acquaintances knew how and when to feed him tips.

Goosebump moments, when cynicism gives way to wonder and excitement? Glasier had a few. Like spending time with Muhammad Ali and Floyd Patterson when they came to Lewiston to celebrate a Night of Heavyweights promotion in the city that hosted the second Ali-Sonny Liston fight some 20 years earlier.

Glasier was the master of ceremonies, and briefly had Ali and Patterson to himself. Parkinson’s Syndrome had shackled Ali’s voice but his presence filled the room.

Glasier was at the 1985 Super Bowl when the Chicago Bears ran over the New England Patriots. He was at Shea Stadium in 1986, standing on tip-toes, peering over the right-field fence when the ground ball went under Bill Buckner’s glove and through his legs.

He remembers the phone call from Lee Roy, his friend from their hockey days at the old Riverside Ice Arena in Portland. Lee’s only son, Travis, had been injured during his first 11 seconds on the ice for Boston University as a freshman.

“Lee told me he didn’t think Travis would walk again. I was devastated. I was hoping Lee was over-reacting and Travis would recover (the use of his arms of legs.)” Roy didn’t.

I caught up with Glasier on Saturday at the University of Southern Maine. He’s worked men’s and women’s basketball games, and baseball and softball games online this school year. Plymouth State was on campus for a Little East Conference doubleheader. What retirement?

Glasier took himself off the road about 25 years ago. He was the Portland kid who covered a Super Bowl and a World Series. He didn’t need to do it again and again. Lee Goldberg, his colleague for some 15 years, became WCSH’s face at Fenway Park and Gillette Stadium, and Glasier was fine with that. Goldberg will succeed Glasier.

Glasier doesn’t know if the Varsity Club segment he introduced will survive. Tired of talking about Maine student-athletes who were suspended or kicked off teams for bad behavior, Glasier went looking for the good examples and told their stories.

His audience listened. No one else was doing this in Maine.

Glasier smiles and all but shrugs. He’ll take his quitters cake Friday and eat it. He won’t choke.

Staff Writer Steve Solloway can be contacted at 791-6412 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: Steve SollowayPPH


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