The Broncos organization lost owner Pat Bowlen overnight after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Bowlen was 75 years old.
He owned the organization for the past 35 years, taking over in 1984, and watched his Broncos go to as many Super Bowls as they had losing seasons over that time (7). In his over three decades with the team, the Broncos averaged more than 10 wins per year.
The Bowlen family shared the following via an official release:
“We are saddened to inform everyone that our beloved husband and father, Pat Bowlen, passed on to the next chapter of his life late Thursday night peacefully at home surrounded by family. His soul will live on through the Broncos, the city of Denver and all of our fans.
“Our family wishes to express its sincere gratitude for the outpouring of support we have received in recent years. Heaven got a little bit more orange and blue tonight.
“Pat Bowlen had a competitive spirit with a great sense of humor. As fun-loving as he was, he always wanted us to understand the big picture. We will forever remember his kindness and humility.
“More important than being an incredible owner, Pat Bowlen was an incredible human being.”
He was voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame's 2019 class and set the bar high for NFL owners everywhere when it came to his commitment to winning with integrity and class. Bowlen also wasn't one for the bright spotlights that come with winning three Super Bowls, including back-to-back titles in 1997 and 1998.
“I would much rather operate behind the curtain and let the athletes and coaches be the entertainment,” Bowlen once shared, according to the Broncos official release. “I think that’s the way that it should be.”
Head here to read more on Bowlen and his impact on the Broncos organization, and beyond.