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WIP Legend Big Daddy Graham Dies Aged 68 | Tributes pour in for the cherished artist

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The sports radio scene in Philadelphia mourns the loss of a legend Thursday.

Big Daddy Graham, born as Edward Gudonis, died Wednesday night, according to TEC. He was 68 years old.

According to Philadelphia InvestigatorGraham joined WIP in 1997 and spent two decades running the stations night shift. His career slowed down in 2019 after being paralyzed from waist to toe following a spinal cord injury. But that didn’t stop Graham from standing in front of the microphone, moderating the Big Daddy Graham Countdown Podcast.

WIP has lost one of its best inhabitants, and this city has lost one of its most cherished and talented artists, Angelo Cataldi said when opening his show Thursday morning. All of us here at WIP are devastated by the news that we have lost one of the greats.

According to the Inquirer, Graham was also a well-known comedian, recording artist and author, most recently co-authoring a revised edition of The Great Book of Philadelphia Sports Lists with fellow WIP host Glen Macnow.

Macnow was one of the many colleagues at pay homage Thursday: I learned last night of the death of my friend Big Daddy Graham. A man’s jewel. A diamond in the rough. A funny, hardworking, eccentric sweetheart of an unfiltered guy. My friend, my co-author. He will be missed by all of us.

TEC Howard eskin: I woke up this morning to very sad news with the passing of @BigDaddyGraham Wednesday night. So much to remember about Big Daddy, but everyone and I will never forget that he was one of a kind. My condolences to Ava Graham and the family. #RIPBIGDADDY

TEC Jon marks: Waking up to the news of Big Daddy’s passing is a real punch. He was a great guy and very good to me personally. I send all my love to his family on this difficult day.

TEC Joe giglio: I did a lot of 10p-2a shifts when I started at WIP while also working in an 8-5 office in North Jersey. Every second of sleep counted a lot. But I often stayed for 10-15 minute crossovers leading up to the Big Daddys show. Just such a fun person to be around. Big Daddy Graham was one of those people you feel lucky to have known and known. What a great guy. TEAR.

Former radio partner Neil hartman: I am heartbroken by the passing of my friend and former colleague Big Daddy Graham. What a unique and loving man who had a heart of gold. I will always cherish the times we spent together and the years of laughter he has brought into my life and many others. He was truly one of a kind!

TEC Eliot Shorr-Parks: Big Daddy Graham was the best. Super nice, super talented. I loved listening to him grow up and hearing his song sing at 2 a.m. A 94WIP legend that will be missed.

TEC Rob ellis: Big Daddy was one of those people who you knew from the moment you met them were unique. He was an authentic character. I feel lucky to have done shows with him and hang out off the air. He was Philly through and through. He will miss him very much. A thought for his family and his friends.

WFAN Executive Eskin Point: Big Daddy Graham was a really great guy who will always be a part of our lives and @SportsRadioWIPthe story. He immediately welcomed me and I’m glad I got to know him. Rest in peace BDG.

AP Editor Rob maaddi: Heartbreaking to learn that Big Daddy Graham passed away last night. One of the nicest, most generous guys I know. Every kind word you read about him today is exactly who he is. Rest in peace, BDG.

Former general manager of the Sixers Billy King: RIP Big Daddy, a true Philly sports radio icon, will never be forgotten.

Former Flyers Guardian Bernie Parent: Our hearts are saddened by the loss of @BigDaddyGraham Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. #PhillyLegend

Old Phil Martelli, St. Josephs Men’s Basketball Coach: Heavy heart !! A Finnegan playground, Southwest Philly, one guy’s Western Catholic gem – loved all the Philly teams we met @Phillies at the airport in 1964 on the last day of the season #friend for life #TEAR

KYW host Dave Uram: After hearing of Big Daddy Graham’s passing last night, I gathered some thoughts on a man I greatly admired. It was an honor to be his friend and to produce him. I think of Debbie, Keely, Ava and the rest of her family and close friends.

Thank you for relying on us to provide journalism you can trust. Consider supporting us with a subscription.

Mike Rosenstein can be reached at [email protected].

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