This is Probably the Saddest Autograph Collector Story of All-Time

Robin Greer holds a photograph of her mother, model Dolores GreerScott Smith, a New Jersey man, decided he wanted to make it his quest in life to get every Sports Illustrated cover autographed. Incredibly, he did a tremendous job tracking down the athletes and getting their autographs. Talking to the LA Times last month, Smith boasted about his impressive collection of autographed covers: Michael Jordan’s autograph on 35 of his 51 covers, 48 from Muhammad Ali, 11 from Mickey Mantle.

He’s missing one autograph.

4,413 sports stars on 2,913 covers of SI. But an unnamed model from 1960 eludes him.

But for all of his prize catches, one has eluded him: the signature of the woman on the cover of the Oct. 17, 1960, edition of SI, holding what appears to be a kite.

The unnamed model is illustrating what the cover calls the “new look in sports clothes” — in the woman’s case, a sleeveless blue bodysuit.

That story ran in the LA Times Tuesday. As the radical accomplishment sped around the internet, good news arrived! Someone knew who the model was! It was Dolores Greer! One problem: Dolores Greer died. One month ago. On the same day Smith was talking to the LA Times. Bummer!

The search for a Los Angeles woman who 53 years ago was a Sports Illustrated cover girl has ended sadly for a collector of autographs from cover subjects.

Model Dolores Greer, 81, died last month on the same day that cover autograph collector Scott Smith was being interviewed by The Times for a story that was published Tuesday.

Two words capture my reaction. That sucks. [via LA Times]

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