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Subject: Nick Buoniconti, NFL Hall-of-Famer, aged 78 (from dementia, according to TMZ) ....

Ed Tracey
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Date Posted: Wednesday, July 31, 09:23:43am

Hall of Fame LB Nick Buoniconti dead at 78
11:13 AM ET - ESPN News Services

Pro Football Hall of Fame middle linebacker Nick Buoniconti, an undersized overachiever who helped lead the Miami Dolphins to the NFL's only perfect season, has died at the age of 78.

"Today, with a heavy heart and profound sorrow, my family and the entire Miami Project to Cure Paralysis and Buoniconti Fund community mourn the loss of a man who was truly larger than life, my father, NFL Hall of Famer Nick Buoniconti," Marc Buoniconti, his son, said in a statement. "My dad has been my hero and represents what I have always aspired to be: a leader, a mentor and a champion.

Family spokesman Bruce Bobbins said Buoniconti died Tuesday in Bridgehampton, New York. A cause of death wasn't immediately known.

A native of Springfield, Massachusetts, Nick Buoniconti played guard on offense and linebacker on defense for Notre Dame. But at 5-11 and 220 pounds, he was small for an NFL linebacker.
He said in November 2017 that he would donate his brain for CTE research. He revealed in May of that year that he was suffering from memory loss, could not use his left hand and struggled to put on a shirt, among other ailments.

After his son Marc was paralyzed at age 19 while playing football, Nick Buoniconti was a driving force behind the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, raising hundreds of millions of dollars for research. Nick and Marc were on a Wheaties box in 1997 as part of the Miami Project.

"He selflessly gave all to football, to his family and to those who are less fortunate," Marc Buoniconti said in his statement. "He made a promise to me that turned into a revolution in paralysis research. We can best honor his dedication and endless commitment by continuing with our work until that promise is fulfilled and a cure is found,"

Nick Buoniconti also had a successful post-football career in broadcasting and business.

Following retirement, Buoniconti worked as an attorney, as president of U.S. Tobacco and as an agent to such athletes as Bucky Dent and Andre Dawson.

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I remember him as co-host of “Inside The NFL” with Len Dawson in the 1980’s (NT)RussWednesday, July 31, 09:42:48am
I remember in 1985, his son Marc, 19, suffered a spinal cord injury making a tackle for the military college The Citadel, rendering him a quadriplegic! (NT)Nick AND Marc became the public faces of the group that founded the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, now one of the world's leading neurological research centers.Wednesday, July 31, 11:19:25am

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