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Detroit Lions owner William Clay Ford passes away at age 88

A very sad day in the Metro Detroit area yesterday as William Clay Ford, owner of the Detroit Lions passed away at the age of 88. Ford fell ill with pneumonia and died at his home. Ford has owned the Lions since 1964.

Bill Ford Jr.
Bill Ford Jr. Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images

When Ford bought the team in late 1963, he paid $4.5 million. The franchise is now worth approximately $900 million.

Under Ford’s ownership, the Lions had all-time greats such as Barry Sanders, Charlie Sanders, Billy Sims and Calvin Johnson. However, the team only won one playoff game, defeating the Dallas Cowboys in 1991. Despite this, Ford was beloved by players and others who have worked for the Lions franchise throughout the years.

Many players, past and present, including Barry Sanders and Matt Stafford shared their condolences for the Ford family yesterday.

Ford’s funeral services will be private and flags (both the Ford and United States) at all Ford locations for the next 30 days to honor William Clay Ford. I would like to offer my thoughts and prayers to the Ford family during this sorrow time. For more, you can click here.