Sports cartoonist’s daughter reminisces about father’s work - Your West Valley News: Topstory

Sports cartoonist’s daughter reminisces about father’s work

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Saturday, July 24, 2010 12:15 pm

Shirley Mullin Rhodes would sometimes accompany her father to work.

As the daughter of the country’s leading sports cartoonist, that took her to heavyweight boxing bouts in Yankee Stadium, tennis matches at the U.S. Open as well as baseball games in the Ebbets Field and the Polo Grounds.

“I was never a big sports fan, but I always loved being around my father,” said Rhodes, a Sun City West resident.

Willard Mullin became synonymous with sports cartoons in the 1950s and 1960s.

At a time when photography still struggled to capture the game’s defining moments, sports cartoons became a staple at major newspapers.

Mullin penned a sports cartoon six days a week in the New York World-Telegram and also was featured in other publications, including the Sporting News and Time magazine.

Mullin worked at the center of the sport universe during his time in New York, which featured three major-league baseball teams, the NFL’s Giants and numerous big-time boxing matches and horse races.

He often sat next to sports writing legend Red Smith in the press box at major events.

“Red said he used to love sitting next to my father,” Rhodes recalled. “My father would take some notes, then at some point of the game, stand up, tell Red he’d got it, and head back to the office.”

Mullin created many memorable drawings.

However, his most famous was the “Brooklyn Bum,” the scraggly, cigar-chewing oaf who came to personify the Brooklyn Dodgers.

“A lot of people thought my father was a Dodgers’ fan because of that,” Rhodes said. “In reality, he’d always been a Giants’ fan.”

Many of her father’s drawings as well as tributes to him from other artists hang in her Sun City West home. Rhodes keeps others in numerous scrapbooks.

One of those tributes came from famed cartoonist Charles Schulz, who mentioned Mullin in one of his Peanuts strips.

“That actually ran in newspapers,” Rhodes said as she gave a tour of her home. “My father loved working in New York and he made a lot of great friends because of his work.

“He’d walk into (famous restaurant) Toots Shor’s and everyone knew him.”

Mullin, who died in 1978, often incorporated his family into his drawings, for work and pleasure.

Rhodes received numerous hand-drawn birthday cards or holiday greetings from her father.

On another occasion, Mullin used his grandson, Ted, as the inspiration for a drawing of the New York Mets mascot.

“My son thought it was just great,” the 80-year-old Rhodes said. “He was featured with (Manager) Casey Stengel.”

While Rhodes shared her passion for art with her father, she wasn’t blessed with his talent.

“All three of my kids are artistic, but I equate my father to one of the great masters,” she said. “He had a little-boy twinkle and a joy for life.

“He loved what he did.”

  • Discuss

Welcome to the discussion.

1 comment:

Wild Horse West

Tell Us What You Think!

Loading…

Listen to Sorority Noise’s cover of Motion City Soundtrack’s “Everything Is Alright”

Cameron Boucher isn’t one to sit still. This year alone he’s released an album of covers, a four-song EP with Sorority Noise, engineered Ruby …

Published: July 28, 2016 - 12:57 pm @ http://www.avclub.com/article/listen-sorority-nois…

Arizona Universities drawing in technology companies

Seventy-two percent of Arizona State University’s Fulton Schools of Engineering graduates get jobs in Arizona according to Robin Hammond, dire…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 12:56 pm @ http://ktar.com/story/1198941/arizona-universities…

Arizona crime statistics finger immigrants

FLORENCE — Limited data released by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement reveal 271 criminal illegal immigrants have been freed in Arizona…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 12:53 pm @ http://www.trivalleycentral.com/casa_grande_dispat…

Downtown Tucson development creating Southern Arizona hotspot

The recent rejuvenation of Tucson’s downtown district helps attract Millennials and outside interests to Southern Arizona where the climate is…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 12:55 pm @ http://azbigmedia.com/azre-magazine/downtown-tucso…

Crews respond to fire at Phoenix homeless shelter

PHOENIX - Officials are on scene of a fire at a Phoenix homeless shelter. The fire started around 10:00 a.m. at the homeless shelter near 7th …

Published: July 28, 2016 - 12:52 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/nor…

Witnesses Say South Sudan Soldiers Raped Dozens Near UN Camp

Print S. Sudan Fighting Forcing Thousands to Flee to Uganda S. Sudan President Swears In New VP to Replace Machar South Sudan to Swear in New …

Published: July 28, 2016 - 12:02 pm @ http://www.voanews.com/content/witnesses-say-south…

Russia: Corridors to be Set Up to Evacuate Civilians, Unarmed Fighters from Aleppo

Print Assad Offers Amnesty for Rebels, Free Passage for Civilians in Aleppo More Than 40 Killed in IS Truck Bomb Attack in Syria Syrian Civili…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 11:28 am @ http://www.voanews.com/content/russia-says-corrido…

McDonald's Golden Arches First Appeared In Phoenix

Published: Wednesday, July 27, 2016 - 3:22pmUpdated: Wednesday, July 27, 2016 - 3:32pm downloadBurgers, fries and shakes—all of those probably…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 11:02 am @ http://kjzz.org/content/341731/mcdonalds-golden-ar…

Texas-based Bush’s Chicken coming to Gilbert – and they’re bringing car hops

A few weeks ago, a reader asked if I knew what was being built on the southeast corner of Val Vista and Williams Field in Gilbert. It looks li…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 10:32 am @ http://mouthbysouthwest.com/2016/07/28/texas-based…

The Daily 202: Democrats claim patriotism, God and American exceptionalism at convention

THE BIG IDEA: PHILADELPHIA—Democrats are now playing offense on the three G’s that dogged them for so many years: God, gays and guns. Republic…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 10:32 am @ https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/palo…

Facebook

YourWestValley.com on Facebook

Twitter

YourWestValley.com on Twitter

RSS

Subscribe to YourWestValley.com via RSS

RSS Feeds