The former head coach of the Miami Dolphins, Don Shula, passed away at the age of 90 on Monday morning, May 4, 2020. Shula’s death was confirmed by his children.
The Miami Dolphins took to Twitter to reveal the sad news of Shula's passing. He was said to have died “peacefully at his home.”
In their post, the team described the former head coach as “the patriarch of the Miami Dolphins for 50 years." The Miami Dolphins credited the late coach for bringing them victory and elevating “the city of Miami in the national sports scene.”
Don and Mary Anne Shula at the Miami International Film Festival presentation of "An Unbreakable bond" on March 11, 2014 | Photo: World Red Eye/Wikimedia
PAYING TRIBUTE TO SHULA
They concluded their post by sharing their thoughts and prayers to his wife Mary Anne Stephens and his children. Shula was a parent to Dave, Donna, Sharon, Anne, and Mike.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell mourned Shula stating: "[He] will always be remembered as one of the greatest coaches and contributors in the history of our game.” Miami Dolphins president Tom Garfinkel said in a statement:
"Coach Shula was the rare man who exemplified true greatness in every aspect of his life.”
WHAT SHULA DID BEFORE COACHING
Shula led the Miami Dolphins to two Super Bowl victories and they’re the only NFL team to ever complete in a perfect undefeated season. Before getting into coaching, Shula was a professional player for the Cleveland Browns, Baltimore Colts, and the Washington Redskins.
JOINING THE DOLPHINS
He started head coaching in 1963 for the Baltimore Colts at the age of 33. After coaching them for seven years, Shula joined the Dolphins in 1970.
He worked with them for 26 seasons and retired after the 1995 season. The star currently holds the record for most wins by an NFL head coach with 328.
SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR
In 1993, the NFL star was named Sportsman of the Year by “Sports Illustrated.” Shula went into business by starting a chain of steakhouses, Shula's Steakhouse after his retirement.
RUNNING VARIOUS BUSINESSES
He also opened a hotel in Miami called Shula's Hotel and Golf Club. In 2003, the former head coach performed the ceremonial coin toss to kick off Super Bowl XXXVII in San Diego, California.
HIS FIRST WIFE
To honor his first wife, Dorothy, who died of breast cancer in 1991, Shula founded the Don Shula Foundation for Breast Cancer Research. He and Dorothy had five children together.
Their son Dave coached the Cinncinatti Bengals from 1992 to 1996 and plays the role of a wide receiver coach for Dartmouth College.
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