October 6, 2019
Most people will remember him from the 1971 movie Brian's Song about his friendship with Brian Piccolo. There are many respected NFL players, coaches and owners with nothing but positive memories and accolades in this story; from the AP...
"CHICAGO (AP) — Gale Sayers, the dazzling and elusive running back who entered the Pro Football Hall of Fame despite the briefest of careers and whose fame extended far beyond the field for decades thanks to a friendship with a dying Chicago Bears teammate, has died. He was 77.
Nicknamed “The Kansas Comet” and considered among the best open-field runners the game has ever seen, Sayers died Wednesday, according to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Relatives of Sayers had said he was diagnosed with dementia. In March 2017, his wife, Ardythe, said she partly blamed his football career.
“Football fans know well Gale’s many accomplishments on the field: a rare combination of speed and power as the game’s most electrifying runner, a dangerous kick returner, his comeback from a serious knee injury to lead the league in rushing, and becoming the youngest player inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame,” Bears chairman George McCaskey said in a statement. “People who weren’t even football fans came to know Gale through the TV movie ‘Brian’s Song,’ about his friendship with teammate Brian Piccolo. Fifty years later, the movie’s message that brotherhood and love needn’t be defined by skin color still resonates.”
Sayers was a blur to NFL defenses, ghosting would-be tacklers or zooming by them like few running backs or kick returners before or since. Yet it was his rock-steady friendship with Piccolo, depicted in the film “Brian’s Song,” that marked him as more than a sports star."
read more here ... https://apnews.com/fbb9f884ab5.....f881da1da7