Len Dawson A Legend Who Took Kansas City Chiefs to Super Bowl IV dies at age 87
Len Dawson A Legend Who Took Kansas City Chiefs to Super Bowl IV dies at age 87 . Len Dawson, who led the Kansas City Chiefs to victory in Super Bowl IV has died at the age of 87, according to his family.
Leonard Ray Dawson was an American football quarterback who played in the National Football League and American Football League for 19 seasons, primarily with the Kansas City Chiefs franchise.
“With wife Linda at his side, it is with much sadness that we inform you of the passing of our beloved Len Dawson,” the family said in a statement to KMBC in Kansas City, where Lawson previously worked as a sports broadcaster. “He was a wonderful husband, father, brother and friend. Len was always grateful and many times overwhelmed by the countless bonds he made during his football and broadcast careers.
“He loved Kansas City and no matter where his travels took him, he could not wait to return home.”
Dawson, who had entered hospice care in Kansas City on Aug. 12, worked for the Chiefs for nearly a half-century: 14 years as a quarterback and 33 as a broadcast analyst.
Chiefs chairman Clark Hunt said he was “heartbroken” about Dawson’s death.
“Len Dawson is synonymous with the Kansas City Chiefs. Len embraced and came to embody Kansas City and the people that call it home. You would be hard-pressed to find a player who had a bigger impact in shaping the organization as we know it today than Len Dawson did,” Hunt said in a statement. “I admired Len my entire life — first as a Hall of Fame player on the field, and later as he transitioned into a successful broadcasting career. Throughout his remarkable career, Len made it a priority to give back to the community that he loved. The franchise has lost a true legend. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Linda and his family.”
Dawson spent the first five years of his 19-season professional career as a sparingly used backup for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns, but his career took off after he signed in 1962 to play for the AFL’s Dallas Texans (soon to be the Kansas City Chiefs) to play under Hank Stram, who had been an assistant at Purdue during Dawson’s stellar collegiate career.
The man Stram once called “the most accurate passer in pro football” immediately showed he was worthy of being a team’s No. 1 quarterback, leading the AFL in completion percentage (61.0) and earning 1962 Player of the Year honors while carrying the Texans to the league title.