Shug Haigler, Voice of the Eagles, dies at 72

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By The Staff

Jerry Thomas "Shug" Haigler, sports writer for the Progressive Journal for more than 40 years, died Sunday. He was 72.
He covered all sports, praising the efforts of hundreds of young athletes. He showcased former Central High School and Pageland High School athletes in a weekly column called “Where Are They Now.”
A collection of the columns – “Where Are They Now?” – was published in 2009.


For many years he was the “Voice of the Eagles” baseball team.
A "Love of the Game of Baseball" award was started in his honor, recognizing a Central High senior baseball player each year who exemplifies passion for the game.
“Shug,” as he was know by everyone, had a quick wit and a great sense of humor and enjoyed telling jokes and sharing his "Shugisms."
He was born Sept. 23, 1946, to the late John M. and Louise I. Haigler.
After attending Campbell University, where he played baseball, he served as a Pageland police officer. He was an insurance agent for 30-plus years, retiring in 2009.
In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by his sisters, Dorothy Sears, Margaret Graham and Carolyn Jenkins.
Survivors are Janet C. Haigler, his wife of almost 50 years; sons, Jerry T. "Punkie" Haigler Jr. (Nancy) of Jefferson, Jonathan C. Haigler (Shannon) of Pageland, and Jason P. Haigler (Mandy) of Pageland; grandchildren, Madeline G. Haigler, Laney C. Haigler, Cody P. Haigler, John W. Haigler, Triston E. Haigler and Elizabeth B. “Lizzie” Haigler; brother, Boyce R. Haigler of Columbia.
His funeral will be 4 p.m. Thursday at First Baptist Church of Pageland, 203 Pigg St. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.
The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 tonight (Jan. 16) at Baumgartner Funeral Home in Pageland.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Central High School Baseball, 200 Zion Church Road, Pageland, S.C. 29728.