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Bart Starr, legendary 1960s Green Bay Packers quarterback, dies at 85



Legendary Green Bay Packers quarterback Bart Starr died Sunday at age 85, according to the team.

Packers announced Starr, a catalyst of Vince Lombardi's power plant from the 1960s, died in Birmingham, Ala., Referring to his family.

He had been in failing health since he suffered a serious stroke in 2014.

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to note the transition to our husband, father, grandfather and friend, Bart Starr, "family members said in a statement.

  Green Star Packers quarterback Bart Starr died Sunday at the age of 85, according to the team.

Green Star Packers Quartz Bag Bart Starr died Sunday at the age of 85, according to the team.
(Getty Images)

Starr "fought with courage and determination" after a serious stroke in September 2014, but "his latest illness was too much to overcome," family members said.

"While he can always be best known for his success as Packer's quarterback for 16 years, his true heritage will always be the respectful way he treated every person he met, his humble behavior and his generous spirit" a statement read.

Packages chose Starr out of the University of Alabama with the 200 picked in the 1956 draft. He led Green Bay to six division titles, five NFL championships and wins in the first two Super Bowls. Until Brett Favre came together, Starr was known as the best Packer ever. The team retired to its No. 15 jersey in 1973, making him the third player to receive that honor. Four years later, he was initiated at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.

After meeting the 1960 NFL title game in his first playoff appearance, Packers never lost another playoff game during Starr, going 9-0, including wins over the Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders in the first two Super Bowls.

Starr's college career was not particularly remarkable, and it was only until Lombardy's arrival in Green Bay in 1959 that Starr, living according to his motto "desire and dedication is all," began flourish.

  In this February 5, 2006, file picture, former Green Bay Packers & # 39; bears Bart Starr in the Vince Lombardi Trophy after the Super Bowl XL football match between the Seattle Seahawks and Pittsburgh Steelers, in Detroit.

In this February 5, 2006, file image, former Green Bay Packers & # 39; carry Bart Starr in the Vince Lombardi Trophy after the Super Bowl XL football match between the Seattle Seahawks and the Pittsburgh Steelers in Detroit.
(AP Photo / Michael Conroy)

Lombardi liked Starr's mechanics, his arm strength and especially his decision-making ability. During Lombardy's care, Starr became one of the league's top quarterbacks.

"If you work harder than anyone else, the chances are that you will beat him even if he has more talent than you," Starr once said. He credited Lombardi to show him that "working hard and using my mind, I could overcome my weakness to the point where I could be one of the best."

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The block's status as a Packers icon was tested by his struggle as the team's main feature. In nine seasons from 1975-83 he won only 41 percent of his games, where he went 53-77-3, including 1-1 in the playoffs, part of three decades with rough followed by honor years.

After football, Starr became a successful businessman in Birmingham, Alabama, not far from his home town of Montgomery, where he was born on January 9, 1934.

Starr was a four-hour Pro Bowl committee and two-hour All-Pro. He won NFL titles in 1961, "62," 65, "67 and" 68. He was the 1966 NFL MVP and was named for the 1960's All-Decade team. He was also called the MVP of the first two Super Bowls. Starr also has an NFL prize named after him, given annually to a player of excellent

But the game he was most famous for was a race.

  In this September 10, 2012, movie picture, former Green Bay Packers quarterback Bart Starr waves to fans under the Packers & NFL football match against San Francisco 49ers in Green Bay, Wis.

In this September 10, 2012, movie image, former Green Bay Packers quarterback Bart Starr waves to fans under the Packers' NFL football match against San Francisco 49ers in Green Bay, Wis.
(AP Photo / Jeffrey Phelps)

In the NFL championship on December 31, 1967, Starr broke the end zone behind guard Jerry Kramer and center Ken Bowman with 16 seconds to lift Packers over the Dallas Cowboys 21-17 in it known as "Ice Bowl".

"We all have the ability to focus and concentrate in a unique way when we are invited to do so," Starr said on the 30th anniversary of that game. "That was exactly what I did that day. And I think the same was true of the cowboys. Let's see, of course, they weren't used to something like that, and yet the team that had risen and returned in the second half and was able to win it. "

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Two weeks later in sunny Miami, Packers defeated the AFL champion's Raiders 33-14 in Lombardy's last play as the lead role of Packers.

When Starr retired after the 1971 season, his 57.4 career peak was in the heavy NFL, and his 80.5 pass rating was second best ever behind only Otto Graham. Starr replaced Dan Devine as Packer's head coach in 1975 and would be replaced by former team-mate Forrest Gregg in 1984 after failing to lead the franchise to the kind of success he made as a player.

In 1965, Starr and his wife, Cherry, helped co-found Rawhide Boys Ranch in New London, Wisconsin, a facility designed to help risky and troubled boys across the state. The couple treated tragedies in 1988 when their son Brett died at 24 o'clock due to complications from cocaine addiction. They also had another son, Bart Jr.

"His love for all mankind is well known, and his love for the people of Alabama and Wisconsin filled him with gratitude," says the family's statement. "He was hoping to make a last trip to Green Bay to see Packers in the fall, but he must be there forever in spirit."

Associated Press contributed to this report.


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