MANKATO — You could always tell when Chris Painter was in the room because of his big booming voice.

Friends and colleagues say he always had a story to tell no matter who he was talking to.

Painter’s voice was a staple for many Maverick fans. He did radio commentary for Minnesota State basketball and football games for several decades.

The longtime Mankato resident died Monday. He was 68.

Painter was passionate about sports and community. He rarely missed weekly golf outings and Monday lunches with friends, and was one of the Mavericks most dedicated fans.

He would shape his schedule around Maverick football games so he wouldn’t miss a single one. Painter was a regular at the luncheons put on by the football team on the Friday before a home game.

“He was always there, front and center,” said Todd Hoffner, MSU head football coach.

Even after Painter stopped doing radio commentary for MSU football games, he still knew the players and they knew him.

“At Blakeslee Stadium, he was an icon,” Hoffner said.

Painter is being inducted into the Maverick Hall of Fame this fall.

Painter also built a legacy at Radio Mankato. He was still working as a sales executive there when he died. He is one of the longest-serving employees at the company. His many connections in the community and advertising skills helped the seven Radio Mankato stations grow over the years.

Brett Prescher, sales manager at Radio Mankato, said Painter genuinely wanted to help businesses expand and reach more customers.

“He was a champion for us,” Preacher said. “He really took it upon himself to help others.”

Even with the onset of technology, Painter was a traditional guy and wrote advertising segment scripts and orders by hand.

He genuinely cared about the people he worked with, and Prescher said everyone loved being around him.

“He was just a big lovable guy,” he said.

Painter was passionate about his work, the Mavericks and the community, but friends and colleagues said his family came first and that his children and grandchildren were his biggest priorities.

“He always made sure he was at the dance recitals,” Prescher said.

Painter was born in 1953 in Great Bend, Kansas. He moved to Mankato with his family at age 16 when his dad, Dick, got a job as general manager for KSYM radio.

Painter quickly got hooked on the Mankato Golf Club after moving to town. In a video posted on Mankato Golf Club’s Facebook page last year, Painter said the club is one of the most important things that ever happened to him.

“Over 50 years there I have met so many great people,” he said.

Painter was a regular and golfed with a group of friends every Thursday, Saturday and Sunday.

Friend Roger Landwehr said he and “Paint” probably golfed about 3,000 rounds together over the span of 33 years. Landwehr was Painter’s partner the day he played the best round of golf he ever had, shooting a 66.

Landwehr said Painter’s power was his storytelling. He would tell a story 100 times and it would still be fresh and funny each time he told it.

Painter loved to share stories, especially about his prowess at betting wagers on the right people at the annual Loren Krugal Invitational at the golf club.

Painter liked to talk about the time he bet a group of young men that his friend Jeff Pint would hit farther than anybody else.

Landwehr said Painter took home a decent amount of money that day.id=”blockColorblindContent”} {/div}

 

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