Willhite, 67, dies of cancer

Updated: December 19, 2008, 5:29 PM ET
Associated Press

DENVER -- Nick Willhite, a hard-throwing left-hander for the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 1960s, has died after a battle with cancer. He was 67.

Willhite, who grew up in Denver and starred in baseball and football at South High, died Sunday at the home of his son Monty in Alpine, Utah, the son said Friday.

Jon Nicholas Willhite pitched for the Dodgers from 1963-66, and was a member of their World Series championship teams of 1963 and 1965 along with Hall of Fame pitchers Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale. Willhite also had stints with the Washington Senators, California Angels and the New York Mets, finishing with a career record of 6-12 in 58 appearances.

Monty Willhite said his father struggled with alcoholism over the years, but ultimately became a Utah-based alcohol counselor and a coach at a youth baseball program at Brigham Young University.

A native of Tulsa, Okla., Willhite also had minor league coaching jobs with the Kansas City Royals, Milwaukee Brewers and New York Yankees.

Willhite is survived by sons Monty and James; daughters Nina Brown, Jenelle Smith, RaDawn Bagley and Lindsay Stroud; brothers Phil and Jamie; 27 grandchildren, and a great-granddaughter.

Services are scheduled for Monday at the Alpine 10th Ward Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Alpine, Utah.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press