Former Pittsburgh Steeler, Sam Davis, Dies At 75 After Going Missing From Nursing Home
The former offensive lineman, who was blind with dementia, was found after his family reported him missing.
Former Pittsburgh Steelers player Sam Davis has died at 75.
The four-time Super Bowl champion, who was blind and suffered from dementia, was found dead on Tuesday, hours after his family reported him missing, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
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Authorities discovered him in the stairwell of his personal care home in McKeesport, which is a few miles outside of Pittsburgh. Officials don’t believe his death was suspicious or criminal.
The former offensive lineman was an integral part of the Steelers dynasty in the 1970s and spent more than a decade with the team. The Florida native was drafted in 1967 out of Allen University, an HBCU in Columbia, South Carolina.
His daughter, Samantha Paige Davis, remembered her father on social media while thanking supporters for wrapping their arms around the family during "this tragic time."
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Thank you to all our family and friends for supporting us and wrapping your arms around us in this tragic time. We are asking for friends and family to give us time and space to mourn the loss of our father and begin our healing journey. Please contact me or my siblings instead of our mother during this time. We will share an update as soon as we are ready. We have so much love and gratitude for each of you. ❤🙏🏽
Davis’ fellow player, Rocky Bleier, whom he helped make NFL history, shared his condolences about his friend in a heartfelt message on Instagram.
“Sorry to hear about the passing of my good friend and teammate Sam Davis...#57 like Heinz Sauce! He was instrumental in helping me and Franco to each gain a 1,000 yards in one season. Rest In Peace Tight Man,” Bleier wrote.
A few years after starting on the Pittsburgh's 1975 championship team, Davis went on to help protect Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw earn both Super Bowl and MVP honors that season.
Following his retirement in January of 1982, Davis became an entrepreneur while owning several businesses, including a construction company.
As reported in Pittsburgh Magazine, Davis was given the nickname “Tight Man” for the way he glued the team together. Not only did he remind young linemen to study their playbooks, but he also stepped in to help when the schemes were too complicated.
“Sam was a great football player and an even better man...he epitomized what it means to be a Steeler,” Craig Wolfley, who replaced Davis on the Steelers line, told the magazine last year.