Oct. 9 (UPI) — Los Angeles Chargers patriarch Alex Spanos died on Tuesday at 95 years old.
The Spanos family released a statement on the team website to make the announcement, saying Spanos died while surrounded by his loved ones on Tuesday morning.
“From humble beginnings to becoming the top apartment builder across the nation and the owner of an NFL franchise, Alex proved that dreams do come true,” the family said.
“Alex was the embodiment of the American dream and leaves behind a legacy of passion and hard work. Born the son of Greek immigrants in 1923, Alex’s tireless work ethic and fearlessness was instilled in him when at only eight years old, he began working in his father’s bakery before and after school. A tough upbringing coupled with the unshakeable belief that he could accomplish anything he set his mind to drove him to succeed and overcome countless obstacles.”
Spanos purchased the Chargers in 1984, after buying a smaller interest in the franchise in 1980. During that tenure, he watched the team advance to Super Bowl XXIX and helped implement various community outreach programs that are still in existence. He left the son to his son Dean Spanos in 1994.
His wife Faye died in August at 92 years old. The couple had four children, 15 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren and were married for nearly 70 years.
“Fiercely loyal, competitive, passionate and loving – that was Alex Spanos,” the Spanos family said.
“We have no words that can adequately express our sadness with his passing. We will continue to honor his legacy by dedicating ourselves to making a difference in the community and throughout our country.”
“As Alex would say, ‘Believe in yourself. There is nothing you can’t do if you set your mind to it.'”
Funeral arrangements for Spanos will be announced in the next few days.