If you are a very good NFL player you’ll get Pro Bowl recognition, if you are the best of the best you’ll get a spot in The Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton. Arthur James Donovan Jr. accomplished all that but the story of his 89 years is so much more than that.
Today The Cathedral of Mary Our Queen was packed with people who knew that football is what Art did but knew first hand he was so much more than the game he and Baltimore loved. Governor’s, CEO’s, top NFL executives, The President of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, his Colts teammates were all there, so too was the regular ordinary hard-working guy who felt so connected to Art Donovan, some dressed in Baltimore Colts number 70 jerseys.
Art was proud of his Irish roots honed in the Bronx but he was as Baltimore as a steamed crab and the Inner Harbor. He came to our town and never left. He raised his family and spent over 60 years here. If you never shared a drink or heard Artie telling one of his stories, shame on you! You didn’t have to go through a PR agency to get some time with him. A regular on the Johnny Carson and David Lettermen Show Artie always saw himself as just a regular guy who had some incredible luck in life.
Despite his local and national star status the truth about Artie was apparent for all of us to see, he cared about God, family and his country and everybody he met was a friend. He may be the biggest personality in Baltimore Sports history, we’ve lost a legend but not the memories and all those smiles he put on all those faces all those years. God Bless Artie!