Congratulations to our own Mr. Larry Griffin, selected for induction into the Macomb County Athletic Hall of Fame.
Griffin, the “Voice of the Pilots” for the past 20 years, will be inducted into the prestigious group during ceremonies May 25, 2022, at the Mirage Banquet Hall. The 2021 event, when Griffin was originally scheduled to be honored, was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nominated by former Athletic Director Mike Jolly, who serves on the Selection Committee for the Macomb County Athletic Directors Association, Griffin will receive the Dave Jackson Award, presented to individuals who have provided distinguished service as volunteers.
“The designation of ‘Distinguished Service Honoree’ fits Larry Griffin so well,” Jolly said. “ Those so designated are all ‘heart motivated’ and their selection not only makes their community feel proud, but more importantly, it makes them feel good. The honorees’ contributions are selfless and they go so far above and beyond ‘normal’ that they serve as an inspiration for us all.”
DLS Athletic Director Dan Rohn commented, “High school athletics are very special and a major part of the high school experience for the young men who attend De La Salle. Alumni talk about their experiences on the court and football field their entire lives with classmates, family, and friends. People like Larry Griffin, and their commitment to our student-athletes, school, and community, are what make those experiences memorable and enjoyable for everyone. He has been the voice of the Pilots for over 20 years, and we appreciate his commitment and dedication to our school and community.”
Griffin, who joined the DLS Dads’ Club before his son David, Class of 2006, even started his freshman year, has led that organization as the group’s president and secretary. He continues his involvement with the Dads’ Club to this day, serving as one of the alumni representatives.
Back in 2002, Griffin was announcing CYO games for St. Jude, as well as baseball games for the Harper Woods Little League. Griffin told Jolly he was interested in filling in, and “the next thing I knew, I was announcing both football and basketball games in the 2003-2004 season.”
Griffin worked in the corporate world before choosing to work with nonprofits and had experience working in group sales with the Detroit Pistons.
“At the time, the late Mark “Doc” Andrews announced for the Pistons, and I thought he was the best,” Griffin said. “I basically copied his style.”
Griffin has also attended some MHSAA seminars on announcing, and says his “personal thing is don’t screw up the kids’ names!”
A 1975 graduate of Detroit’s Denby High School, Griffin also took some broadcast journalism classes at Wayne State University. “It’s important to speak clearly and present the facts,” Griffin said.
While serving as Dads’ Club president, Griffin invited former Pistons Coach Ray Scott to a meeting, as well as former Detroit Tigers announcer Mario Impemba.
“Mario was a great speaker for the group. He brought his dad and talked for about 30 minutes about growing up in the area and his path to becoming a professional announcer,” Griffin said.
In addition to his son David, who is married and living in Shelby Township, Griffin and his wife Anita, longtime administrative assistant to DLS principals, are the parents of Lisa, a Regina graduate, and the grandparents of two. Larry and Anita live in Sterling Heights.
While his children were growing up, Griffin coached Little League for 10 years and was an umpire for eight.
After years in the corporate world, Griffin voluntarily chose to begin working for charitable organizations. “The corporate world was too cut-throat,” he said. Griffin worked with St. Vincent de Paul (five years), and is currently with Planet Aid as a national customer service manager.
“The DLS parents are great,” Griffin said. “And I appreciate everything DLS has allowed me to do. I feel strongly about volunteering, You've got to give back to the school.”
Griffin noted that his longtime sidekick, Greg Breuckman, an alumni parent, had stepped away from scoreboard duties during COVID. Craig Wilking, ‘89, has been handling the scoreboard duties for football and basketball for the last two years.
Jolly also noted Griffin’s professionalism, enthusiasm, and creativity.
“He makes our games first class in all respects - and memorable! Who can forget the first time we heard his WHOOOOOSH! of a low-flying jet following some significant football play? On top of it all, Larry is simply a wonderful human being and family man whose love for De La Salle is the foundation for all of his work. It is so cool for Larry to now join another great DLS man and award recipient, the late Dave Malinowski (2009), in our County Hall of Fame.”