Don Ohlmeyer, the "Monday Night Football" producer who came up with the phrase "Must See TV" in leading NBC to the No. 1 prime-time spot, died Sunday. He was 72.
"It is with heavy hearts we share that Don Ohlmeyer, our beloved husband, father and grandfather, has passed away at age of 72 due to cancer," Ohlmeyer's family said in a statement. "Surrounded by loved ones, he died peacefully at his home in Indian Wells."
Longtime friend Al Michaels announced Ohlmeyer's death while broadcasting NBC's "Sunday Night Football" game between the
Ohlmeyer won 16 Emmys, including the Lifetime Achievement Award, and two Peabody Awards.
"Don Ohlmeyer was a towering figure in sports and entertainment who had an indelible impact both on NBC and our industry,"
Ohlmeyer became producer of "Monday Night Football" in 1972, teaming with director Chet Forte and the on-air crew of Howard Cosell, Don Meredith and Frank Gifford. In 2000 in his second stint with the broadcast, Ohlmeyer put comedian Dennis Miller in the booth.
Ohlmeyer first worked for
After running his own Ohlmeyer Communications Co., he returned to NBC in 1993 as president of its entertainment division. He came up with "Must See TV" in the 1990s, when NBC's rating soared with such hits as "Seinfeld," ''Friends," ''ER" and "Frasier."