MOBILE, Alabama (CBS SF) — Oakland Raiders great Ken Stabler has died of cancer at the age of 69, according to a statement from his family.
The family’s statement was posted to a Ken Stabler Facebook fan account and also provided by a University of Alabama spokesman.
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We announce with great sadness that our father, Ken Stabler, passed away Wednesday, July 8 as a result of complications associated with colon cancer.
He passed peacefully surrounded by the people he loved most, including his three daughters and longtime partner, as some of his favorite songs played in the background, such as Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama” and Van Morrison’s “Leaves Falling Down.”
He quietly battled Stage 4 colon cancer since being diagnosed in February 2015.
Word of Stabler’s death was first reported by the Tuscaloosa News and shared widely on other outlets and social media before it was retracted by the News, which said the story was inadvertently published before being confirmed.
“The Raiders are deeply saddened by the passing of the great Ken Stabler,” said owner Mark Davis in a statement. “He was a cherished member of the Raider family and personified what it means to be a Raider. He wore the Silver and Black with Pride and Poise and will continue to live in the hearts of Raider fans everywhere. Our sincerest thoughts and prayers go out to Kenny’s family.”
Former Raiders head coach and KCBS News contributor John Madden also issued a statement: “I’ve often said, If I had one drive to win a game to this day, and I had a quarterback to pick, I would pick Kenny. Snake was a lot cooler that [sic] I was. He was a perfect quarterback and a perfect Raider. When you think about the Raiders you think about Ken Stabler. Kenny loved life. It is a sad day for all Raiders.”READ MORE: Wind-Whipped Wildfire in Big Sur Shuts Hwy 1, Forces Evacuations
Stabler was a four-time Pro Bowl selection and led the Raiders to a Super Bowl XI championship in January 1977.
After 10 seasons with the Raiders, Stabler played two seasons with the Houston Oilers and three with New Orleans Saints.
The Alabama native also starred at quarterback at the University of Alabama before being drafted by the Raiders in 1968.MORE NEWS: Curry Hits Winning Jumper, Warriors Beat Rockets 105-103
Following his 15-year pro football career, Stabler was a color commentator for CBS NFL broadcasts and later a radio analyst for Alabama football games.