MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — A legendary sportswriter in West Virginia is celebrating his 90th birthday.

MetroNews file photo

Mickey Furfari started his writing career when he was a student at West Virginia University.

“I’ve been so blessed by friends, by family and friends,” said Mickey Furfari.  “And I feel I am happiest when I’m writing.”

Furfari, a Morgantown native, is well known throughout West Virginia for his more than 65 years of writing about sports.

His career started in college at West Virginia University when he shared sports editor duties at The Daily Athenaeum with Jack Fleming from 1946-1947 and worked for the Associated Press in Huntington.

Furfari served in the U.S. Army in World War II from 1943-1946 and was the sports editor, during part of that time, for the Pacific Stars and Stripes.

Following his graduation from WVU’s School of Journalism in 1948, he worked for the Charleston Gazette before returning to Morgantown in 1949 to fill a number of roles with Morgantown newspapers, mainly covering the Mountaineers, up until 1989.

Since then, he has worked as a special syndicated writer and columnist for newspapers throughout West Virginia.  He produces four columns each week for five newspapers, even though he is hard of hearing and legally blind.

He said he still loves writing. “I have three (columns) for this week already,” he said.

MetroNews affiliate WAJR-AM in Morgantown helped mark Furfari’s 90th birthday with a special edition of “Morgantown AM” on Monday.

He was also a guest on Monday’s MetroNews “Talkline.”

On the show, Furfari said he wants to keep writing about Mountaineers sports. “I have no plans to retire as long as the good Lord continues to give me good health,” he said.

He said what motivated him at the beginning of his career is still the same. “I love people and the more I wrote, the more I just loved it,” said Furfari.

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Comments

  • Phil M.

    Happy Birthday Mickey and give them hell.
    It will make them work harder just like you have all these years.

    His comments may have some negative overtones to them but can anybody really argue with the facts. That's really all he's doing is stating facts and asking questions.

  • Dave

    Happy Birthday Mickey! I enjoy reading your column in the Journal here on the Eastern Panhandle. I especially enjoy reading about former athletes' lives.
    Keep on writing, Sir!

  • Jill Underdonk Stevenson

    Happy birthday Mickey and thank you for your years of service to West Virginia. My Dad and the rest of the family thinks the world of you.

  • Pete

    Happy 90th birthday Mickey; I hope to read many more of your articles. As far as the people on here that whine because sometimes Mickey writes something they don't agree with.....well that is just too bad for them. They need to understand that Mickey is a journalist not a cheerleader.

  • Metzger

    Happy 90th and many more -

  • Jeremy Bauserman

    Happy 90th birthday to a West Virginia legend.

  • cutty77

    Mickey is a True Treasure. 90 years of life,yes alot of things Change in ones life. If we all get to 90,there would be alot of things we don't like. Give Mickey a Break in some things he say's. I bought i think 8 copies of his book when he was at United Bank several years ago. Had him sign everyone of them for friends of mine. He has thousands of Great stories. Have him tell you the one how he told Coach Rupp at Ky. to stick it. He wouldn't give Mickey a Press Pass,because Mickey said something Rupp didn't like. Then Rupp told Mickey he would give him a press pass,and Mickey said keep your Damm Press Pass. Yes Mickey has done it his way for a long Time. Treasure Him,because there will never be another one like Him. He's alot like Beano Cook was.

  • UPSer

    Anyone who has worked over 65 years cast the first stone. Happy 90TH Birthday Mickey

  • Steven Ferguson

    Happy Birthday, Mickey! Keep on truckin'!

  • thornton

    Pretty sure the point of the moment is a 90 year-old gentleman celebrating a birthday....not WVU, positive or negative.

    HBD, Mr. Furfari.

  • ConservativeRealist

    Good journalists can't always promise to tell us what we want to hear. As for the, "...ready for the Big 12..." issue, give it a couple of years with no bowl appearances and losing records and even the most erstwhile fans will be calling for coaching and/or athletic director change(s). It happens at every major college in the country except at Michigan, Ohio State, etc. the fans only tolerate one losing season and then they want heads to roll...

  • Big John

    I would like to see him write about the last 10 years or so. He goes too much in the past and his writing has hurt WVU . He seems to be extremely negative about Oliver Luck, Dana and Bob Huggins. I would like to see him write one article on postive things about WVU before he is no longer capable of writing. In the past three years he has destroyed all of his work in the past 62 years. I read his article to see if he has finally seen the light to write postive thoughts instead of negatively things.He must of have kinship with Big Larry as he only writes negatively about WVU.

    • William

      @big JOHN - I GUESS THE TRUTH HURTS, but some WVU fans don't care about the TRUTH and people with GREAT CHARACTER. WVU just needs to hire people with GREAT CHARACTER to (FIX IT)!

      • Big John

        You tell me a better person for Athletic Director, football coach and basketball coach for the same money we are paying these three people.

      • Uncle Unctuous

        At first, I was skeptical of William's comment, but then I saw all the capital letters and figured that must mean he really knows his stuff.

  • Robyn

    As Mickey's granddaughter and WVU alum, I couldn't be prouder of his accomplishments throughout the many years of his career. He is still the sweet grandfather I know and love, and I will always appreciate & respect him for his passion of writing.

    Happy Birthday!

    • Guardian

      He is a damn good man, Robyn. Be very, very proud of a true WV institution. Happy Birthday Mickey!

    • Sherry

      Your grandfather is one in a million. I grew up reading him & still love his column. He truly loves Mountaineer sports & Mountaineer traditions. He brings honor & respect to his profession & his community. You are so privileged to have him.

    • Rachel

      Well said Robyn. As a WV native and WVU alum, I really appreciate those with a passion for and dedication to the Mountain State. Your Grandfather is a staple of WV sports and an accomplished, wonderful man. I hope his 90th year continues to bring the excitement and love that have sustained his career all these years.

  • Big Larry

    People don't like Mickey anymore because he is truthful and tells it like it is.

    People nowadays don't like or want that.

    They want to hear someone like the staff of "Sportsline" (Tony and the gang)...who sugarcoats everything WVU does.

    • Shepherdstown

      Mickey is more bitter than truthful. He wants us to stay in the past in terms of athletics. Every positive thing done by Oliver and President Clements has been bemoaned by Mickey.

      We are in a far greater position in the Big 12 than we ever were in the Big East and before. Mickey needs to understand this.

      • William

        Mickey Furfari is a TRUE MOUNTAINEER with GREAT CHARACTER. How many employees in WVU Athletic Dept. can you say that about? answer- NOT MANY, but BILL STEWART was that type of person!
        @ Shepherdstown -WVU does not belong in the BIG !2 for many reasons. WVU has been going down hill the past 4 years under the present leadership and it will be like that for a long time, because it's all about GREED AND MONEY at WVU

        • Shepherdstown

          What planet are you living on?

          WVU has been going down hill for the past 4 years? If so, do to the lack of good recruiting by the previous, aforementioned coach.

          Would you prefer we still be in what has become of the Big East (i.e. the AAC) that has not future in the changes being made in college football.

          I would much prefer playing in a conference with Texas, Oklahoma, and the rest over a conference that is not even good enough for Rutgers.

          You may think it is about greed and money, but in reality it is all about relevance and the forward growth of this university. Of which I am a proud alum.

        • Big John

          A person of good character would not ask someone to dig up dirt on Dana like he did and he got lucky and kids were motivated because of actions of Rich Rod and Bill caused our recruiting to be awful while hel was coach at WVU.

          • Guardian

            Oh my dear God! You believed that crap about digging up dirt on Dana - that was put out by Ollie's mouthpieces. Ever wonder why in Stew's settlement agreement there was a strict confidentially rider? We sure couldn't have Stew out there telling his side of those events and bringing up evidence to back it up, now could we?

            As to Stew's recruiting . . . T Austin, S Bailey, G Smith, Q Spain, just to name four - 3 of which are in the NFL and the other one will be very, very soon. Hell, Holgy's been winning with Stew's recruits and now that they are graduating out of the system, we'll see how it goes - and that's not negative, it is just saying we have to see how Holgy's recruits do.

  • Shawn

    I'm happy for him but he's gotten really negative over the past 2-3 years. He's old school and hates anything new.