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Glancer Magazine

GIVING BACK | Chicago Bears ESPN Announcer Loses His Life to Cancer, Leaves Behind 11 Year Old Son


After losing his mother two years ago to a rare form of cancer, 11 year old Parker now faces another heartbreaking challenge. His father, Jeff Dickerson, a beloved ESPN / Chicago Bears announcer, died this week from complications of colon cancer. He was just 44.

The network announced his death in an obituary Tuesday afternoon. Per ESPN, Dickerson died at the same hospice center his wife Caitlin Dickerson died in with melanoma at 36 years old in 2019. He entered the hospice center last week. Dickerson is survived by his and Caitlin's 11-year-old son Parker and his parents George and Sandy Dickerson.

His extended family has set up a GoFundMe page to help Parker as he navigates through life without his two parents. The fundraiser has raised over $200,000 so far with close to 4,000 donations and is organized by Jenn Tobin, Dickerson's sister in law. It reads:

"It is with the heaviest of hearts that I ask for your prayers and support for my late brother-in-law, Jeff Dickerson, and his 11-year-old son, Parker.

Early this year, Jeff was delivered the devastating news that he was diagnosed with colon cancer. Typical JD, he remained completely optimistic for a full recovery, especially to be there for Parker. Jeff was unfortunately playing the roll of both parents as just two years ago, Caitlin lost her struggle with an extremely rare form of cancer, leaving then eight-year-old Parker with Jeff his only parent. Without Caitlin, Jeff has done all he could to support Parker, especially his passion for athletics. Undoubtably you could hear the pride in JD’s voice when he talked about Parker’s achievements at such a young age.

Jeff also loved working for ESPN and revered his ESPN colleagues, who have been a constant source of support and inspiration throughout his two decades of work for the network. His unwavering passion for the Bear's was felt by all, including even me, his sister-in-law from St. Louis. My husband and I had the privilege to join Jeff and Caitlin in London when the Bears played and won in 2011. It was fun to get to see JD broadcasting on many occasions. He meant so much to so many, but to our family he was simply “uncle JD”.

Many people have reached out wanting to know how they can support Parker. We set up this fund to do exactly that. Please know that every dollar raised will directly support Parker’s education, health and welfare … and yes, his athletics. P arker will continue to be surrounded by many fans - doting grandparents Sandy & George, Grandma Patty, aunts, uncles and cousins. We hope this fund becomes a lasting tribute to a loving father, son, a great brother-in-law, uncle, professional, coach, colleague and friend.

Donations to Parker's fund will also benefit the cancer research foundation, The V Foundation, founded by ESPN, in which Jeff was on the board. An extremely generous anonymous donor has come forward to match every $1 raised for Parker by making a matching donation to The V Foundation (up to $60,000). The V Foundation for Cancer Research started in 1993 with a big dream: achieve victory over cancer. Since then, they've awarded over $200 million in cancer research grants and have grown to become one of the premier supporters of cutting-edge cancer research."

We all love you JD!

The entire extended Dickerson, Brody, & Hobin family


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