MILWAUKEE (AP) — Bob Betts, the public address announcer whose distinctive baritone made him synonymous with Brewers baseball at Milwaukee County Stadium for more than two decades, has died at the age of 70.

Betts was the announcer for Milwaukee Brewers home games for 23 seasons and became known for his enthusiastic player introductions and for his trademark post-game plea to fans: “Drive home safely."

“He truly was a part of County Stadium, and he will be greatly missed as we go into our final season at the ballpark," said team spokesman Jon Greenberg.

The Brewers are scheduled to move into the new Miller Park, being constructed near the existing stadium, in the year 2000.

Betts rarely missed announcing a home game until this summer, when he was hospitalized with a variety of ailments. He had to be hospitalized earlier this month after a mild heart attack. He died Monday evening at his home.

He previously worked at a number of radio stations and had been general manager at WMSE-FM, the campus radio station at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, until his retirement in 1994.

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“We're deeply saddened to lose a beloved members of the Brewers' family," Greenberg said. “Bob was a good friend to everyone in our organization and to all those who came in contact with him — not only as the Brewers' public address announcer, but also in his radio career and as a member of the Milwaukee community."

Survivors include his wife, Rita, two sons and a daughter.

Funeral arrangements were pending.

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