Edgar Allen Jr., who served as Churchill Downs’ director of media relations from 1979-89, died July 9 in his native Nashville, Tenn. He was 84 and had battled Alzheimer’s and pneumonia.
Allen, a former sports editor of the defunct Nashville Banner, covered high school sports in Tennessee and 13 Super Bowls. He was a former president of the National Basketball Writers Association and National Football Writers Association.
Tony Terry, who took over from Allen at Churchill, remembered Allen as a fine mentor.
“He was just a perfect gentleman,” Terry told the Louisville Courier-Journal. “He brought the same focus in assisting the media in covering the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) that he’d been shown in covering other sports. He was just a consummate journalist.”
Allen, a member of the Tennessee Sports Writers Hall of Fame, is survived by his wife, Ruth, and son Edgar III and daughter Susan.