New York Giants legend, NFL Hall of Famer, and iconic television broadcaster, Frank Gifford, passed away on August 9 at the age of 84. His family announced that the beloved husband (of TV host Kathie Lee Gifford), father, and friend passed suddenly due to natural causes in his home in Greenwich, Connecticut.
President of the Hall of Fame, David Baker, remembered Gifford as a person with “passion, charisma and deep love for the game.” He also said that the legendary sportsman spread his knowledge through his broadcasting career and “taught fans of all generation to love the game.”
Many others echoed these same sentiments. “He was a great friend to everyone in the league, a special advisor to NFL commissioners, and served NFL fans with enormous distinction for so many decades,” said Roger Goodell, NFL Commissioner.
Frank Gifford was born in Santa Monica, California in 1930. He attended university on a football scholarship and kicked off his career in 1952 when he was selected 11th in the first round. He dedicated his entire 12-year NFL career to the New York Giants (1952-1964). After just four short years of his career, Gifford was named the league’s Most Valuable Player. That same year, he led the Giants to the Pro Bowl championship (now known as the Super Bowl). He then got his big break in sports broadcasting when he landed the job of a play-by-play announcer for the ABC Network’s Monday Night Football.
Besides pro football and broadcasting, Gifford also tried his luck in Hollywood—given his good looks, he appeared in several dozen films, his most notable one being Up Periscope in 1959.
Gifford got married to television host Kathie Lee Gifford in October, 1986. Despite the couple’s 23-year age difference, their marriage endured the years and they had two children together.
Gittens, H., “NFL Legend Frank Gifford Passes Away at 84,” NBC News web site, August 10, 2015; http://goo.gl/GNJxSF.
Vacchiano, R., “Frank Gifford mourned by Giants greats of the past and NFL,” New York Daily News web site, August 10, 2015; http://goo.gl/fl4UNX.