Bart Starr, whose Green Bay Packers dominated football, dies at 85
- Author: Michelle Webb May 28, 2019,
May 28, 2019, 1:05
But before them, Starr was the one who helped Green Bay earn their "Titletown" nickname. "They needed a score, and Starr got it for them". He celebrated his 85th birthday in January.
The pair had been high school sweethearts and had two children together, Bart Starr Jr and Bret, the latter of whom died from a drug overdose in 1988. Starr's health had been ailing since he suffered a stroke in 2014, according to the Packers' team historian.
"If you work harder than somebody else, chances are you'll beat him though he has more talent than you", Starr once said. His health had been failing in the years since. In September 2014, he suffered two strokes, a heart attack and several seizures. His recovery included stem cell treatment and working with a trainer. And when things were the tightest for the Packers under his watch, Starr always seemed to come through in the clutch.
Starr won an unprecedented five National Football League championships as the Packers starting quarterback, leading the club to titles in 1961, 1962, 1965, 1966 and 1967. "And when we bring up that possibility, you talk about lighting someone up with enthusiasm, that does it".
"The Packers Family was saddened today to learn of the passing of Bart Starr", Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy said in a statement.
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"A champion on and off the field, Bart epitomized class and was beloved by generations of Packers fans", he said. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Cherry and the entire Starr family, ' he added. Starr led the Packers to victory in Super Bowls I and II and was named the game's MVP each time and was one of three quarterbacks picked on the NFL's 1960s All-Decade Team.
Each week in 2019, the NFL has designated one game to commemorate the league's 100th season, picking matchups that represent "a momentous game played, a fierce rivalry that spans decades, a matchup of original teams and/or a game in which history was made". He then spent two years as a broadcaster with CBS before being named Green Bay's head coach and general manager on Christmas Eve 1974.
Starr graduated from the University of Alabama and was a 17th round pick in the 1956 NFL Draft. An extension of Lombardi on the field and a brillant leader for the Packers.
After news of his passing began to spread, a number of current and former NFL players and coaches took to social media to send their well wishes to Starr's family and to also express their appreciation for what he was able to do during his career out on the football field.
The Packers retired his No. 15 jersey in 1973, making him just the third player to receive that honor.