PASADENA, Calif. -- Entering his 65th season as a broadcaster for the Dodgers, Vin Scully has been showered with awards and accolades, and he is regarded by many as the greatest play-by-play announcer in baseball history.
On Wednesday, the 86-year-old living legend added another accomplishment to his long list of achievements when he served as grand marshal for the 125th Tournament of Roses Parade.
"I think to sum it up, you'd use the word exhilarating," said Scully, describing what it was like to lead the parade of floats down Pasadena's Colorado Avenue. "From the moment we reached the Tournament House, all the pre-parade excitement. The little chill in the air, that really got your attention, all the pageantry and, above all, all the good spirits of all of the volunteers, along with the policemen and motorcycle officers. It is just an incredible experience from the time we arrived this morning until now."
This was Scully's third involvement with this New Year's institution. In 1966, the broadcaster co-hosted ABC television's coverage of the parade with the late Elizabeth Montgomery. In 2008, Scully participated with current and former Dodgers players and employees on a float commemorating the Dodgers' 50th anniversary in Los Angeles.
"When the Dodgers had their float, I was one of about 15 or 20, so you were part of a big party," said Scully. "This time, the spotlight is kinda on you as the grand marshal, so it's a different feeling."
Scully enjoyed being able to turn around in the grand marshal car with his wife, Sandra, and see his children and grandchildren riding in colorful trucks behind them taking in the adulation that is normally reserved for the Scully family patriarch.
"That was probably the single greatest thing about the experience," Scully said. "It was very flattering for your ego to be the grand marshal, but it was so wonderful to have my wife, Sandi, sitting next to me, and right behind us a good portion of the family, enjoying and experiencing what we were going through."
"It was overwhelming to see the fans adore him," said Sandra Scully in describing her experience riding with her husband in the parade. "It makes your heart swell. He is loved, and that is so important for people in positions that he's in, that people really find joy and laughter and that he brings people happiness."
Besides the happiness he got to see in his family's faces as they took part in the parade, Scully was truly happy to hear the cheers for the team that he began broadcasting games for in Brooklyn back in 1950.
"The biggest cheers of the day had to be for the ballclub," recalled Scully of all the people yelling, "Go Dodgers" as they drove the parade route. "I think that's good news for management. The people love the ballclub, it was obvious -- a lot of them wearing Dodger regalia and blankets and signs. It was just great."
Scully spent this New Year's Day taking in the love from people who came from around the world to attend the parade, which had a "Dreams Come True" theme this year. Scully takes nothing for granted, and he reminisced about his memorable day and the new friends he and Sandra met along the way.
"The idea that [this event] will be over and we will allow these people that we have enjoyed immensely, that life will moves us all in separate directions," said Scully. "It's a very, very precious time in our lives. Very much so."
Ben Platt is a national correspondent for MLB.com