It saddens me to report that 49ers’ legend, Dwight Clark, has passed away today at the age of 61 after his difficult battle with ALS. Dwight Clark will always be remembered as a great football player and an even better man. He played a vital role in the creating what is known as one of the best dynasties of all time. Through his nine seasons in the NFL, Dwight had 506 receptions totaling 6,750 yards and 48 touchdowns. His most famous reception was, of course, “The Catch” to clutch the victory in the NFC Championship Game against the Dallas Cowboys. This play will forever go down as the greatest in 49ers history, as well as one of the best in NFL history.
The two-time Super Bowl Champion (XVI, XIX) spent his entire career with the 49ers. He also had two Pro Bowl appearances as well as being a part of two All-Pro teams. In 1982, Clark was a elected to the First Team All-Pro after a season in which he led the NFL in receptions. Dwight Clark’s jersey was retired in 1988 and former 49ers owner, Eddie DeBartolo had this to say about the passing.
“My heart is broken. Today, I lost my little brother and one of my best friends. I cannot put into words how special Dwight was to me and everyone his life touched. He was an amazing husband, father, grandfather, brother and a great friend and teammate. He showed tremendous courage and dignity in his battle with ALS and we hope there will soon be a cure for this horrendous disease. I will always remember Dwight the way he was – larger than life, handsome, charismatic, and the only one who could pull off wearing a fur coat at our Super Bowl parade. He was responsible for one of the most iconic plays in NFL history that began our run of Super Bowl championships, but to me, he will always be and extension of my family. I love him and will miss him terribly. Our hearts and prayers are with his wife Kelly, his children and the entire Clark family.” ~ Eddie DeBartolo
Last season the 49ers honored Dwight Clark in week 7 of the regular season. At halftime Clark gave a powerful speech thanking all those who had supported him in his battle with ALS. Those in attendance included 50 former teammates and 37 members of the 1981 Super Bowl Championship team, all there to support Dwight Clark on his day of recognition.
— Cam Inman (@CamInman) October 22, 2017
Thank you for everything Dwight. You will be remembered and cherished by all of the faithful community now and forever.