Notable sports deaths in 2018

A look at those athletes, coaches and sports personalities we lost in 2018....

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A look at those athletes, coaches and sports personalities we lost in 2018.

Joan Steinbrenner

Photo Credit: AP/Kathy Willens

Joan Steinbrenner, vice chair of the yankees and the wife of late owner George Steinbrenner, died Friday, Dec. 14. She was 83. The Yankees said she died surrounded by family at her home in Tampa, Florida.

Luis Valbuena

Photo Credit: AP/Andrew Nelles

Former Major League Baseball players Luis Valbuena and Jose Castillo were killed in a car crash in Venezuela, MLB tweeted on Thursday, Dec. 5. Both were playing for Cardenales de Lara in the Venezuelan league. The team said their vehicle overturned as they were heading to the city of Barquisimeto after a game in the capital, Caracas.

Jose Castillo

Photo Credit: AP/Keith Srakocic

Former Major League Baseball players Luis Valbuena and Jose Castillo were killed in a car crash in Venezuela, MLB tweeted on Thursday, Dec. 5. Both were playing for Cardenales de Lara in the Venezuelan league. The team said their vehicle overturned as they were heading to the city of Barquisimeto after a game in the capital, Caracas.


Photo Credit: AP / Ben Margot

Willie McCovey, the sweet-swinging Hall of Famer nicknamed "Stretch" for his 6-foot-4 height and those long arms, died after battling ongoing health issues on Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018, at age 80, the San Francisco Giants announced.

Photo Credit: Howard Schnapp

Charles Wang, the founder of CA Technologies and Oyster Bay resident who poured his vast wealth into philanthropic pursuits and garnered credit for keeping the Islanders in New York when he held majority ownership of the team, died on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018. He was 74.

Tex Winter

Photo Credit: AP / Ed Zurga

Winter, the innovative "Triangle Offense" pioneer who assisted Phil Jackson on 11 NBA championship teams with the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Lakers, has died. He was 96. Kansas State University said Winter died Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2018, in Manhattan, Kan.

Alex Spanos

Photo Credit: AP / Tim Boyle

Alex Spanos, who used his fortune from construction and real estate to buy the Chargers in 1984, died Tuesday, Oct. 9, the team announced. He was 95.

Wayde Sims

Photo Credit: AP/Hilary Scheinuk

LSU basketball player Wayde Sims died after he was shot during a fight involving several men early on Friday, Sept. 28, near the campus of another university in his hometown of Baton Rouge.

Jarrod Lyle

Photo Credit: AP/Andy Brownbill

The Australian golfer died after a long struggle with cancer on Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2018, at his home near Melbourne among family and close friends. He was 36.

Stan Mikita

Photo Credit: AP

Stan Mikita, who helped lead the Chicago Blackhawks to the Stanley Cup in 1961 and became one of the franchise's most revered figures, died at age 78, the Blackhawks announced on Tuesday, Aug. 7. The Blackhawks did not disclose details but said he was with his family.

Tom Heckert

Photo Credit: AP/Amy Sancetta

Tom Heckert, a former personnel executive for the Denver Broncos who also served stints as general manager for the Cleveland Browns and the Philadelphia Eagles, died following a long illness, the Broncos said on Monday, Aug. 6. He was 51.

Ray Emery

Photo Credit: AP / Chris O'Meara

Emery, who helped the Ottawa Senators reach the final in 2007 and won the Stanley Cup with the Chicago Blackhawks in 2013, drowned in his hometown of Hamilton, Ontario. He was 35.

Tyler Honeycutt

Photo Credit: AP / Rich Pedroncelli

The former Sacramento Kings and UCLA basketball player was found dead after a standoff with Los Angeles police on Friday, July 6, 2018, a former coach and family friend said. Honeycutt was 27.

Billy Connors

Photo Credit: AP/Kathy Willens

The longtime Yankees pitching guru and adviser to George Steinbrenner died Monday, June 18. He was 76

Peter Thomson

Photo Credit: AP / Mark Baker

The five-time British Open winner died at his Melbourne home on June 20, 2018, Golf Australia said. Thomson had been suffering from Parkinson's disease for more than four years. He was 88.

Anne Donovan

Photo Credit: The Virginian-Pilot via AP

Anne Donovan, the Basketball Hall of Famer who won a national championship at Old Dominion, two Olympic gold medals in the 1980s and coached the U.S. to gold in 2008, died Wednesday, June 13, of heart failure. She was 56.

Red Schoendienst

Photo Credit: AP / Jeff Roberson

The Hall of Fame second baseman who managed the St. Louis Cardinals to two pennants and a World Series championship in the 1960s, died Wednesday, June 6, 2018. He was 95.

Dwight Clark

Photo Credit: AP

Dwight Clark, whose dramatic catch near the end of the 1981 NFC Championship Game helped transform the San Francisco 49ers into an NFL dynasty, died Monday, June 4, from complications associated with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. (ALS). He was 61.

Mike Slive

Photo Credit: AP/Butch Dill

Mike Slive, the former Southeastern Conference commissioner who guided the league through a period of unprecedented success and prosperity, died Wednesday. He was 77.

Chuck Knox

Photo Credit: AP / Kathy Willens

Chuck Knox, the former NFL coach who took the Los Angeles Rams to three straight NFC championship games and also led the Seattle Seahawks and Buffalo Bills, has died. He was 86.

Bill Torrey

Photo Credit: Ozier Muhammad

Former Islanders GM Bill Torrey, who took the franchise from scratch, brought it within a game of the Stanley Cup Final in its third season, helped rescue it from the brink of bankruptcy and guided it to four straight Cup wins from 1980-83, died on Wednesday, May 2, 2018. He was 83.

Bruno Sammartino

Photo Credit: AP / Gene J. Puskar

Bruno Sammartino, professional wrestling's "Living Legend" and one of its longest-reigning champions, died on April 18, 2018, after being hospitalized for two months, family friend and former wrestling announcer Christoper Crusie said. Sammartino was 82.

John Amirante

Photo Credit: Jim McIsaac

John Amirante, the Rangers' longtime national anthem singer, died April 17, 2018, the team announced. He was 83.

Hal Greer

Photo Credit: AP

Hal Greer, a Hall of Fame guard and the Philadelphia 76ers' career leading scorer, died on April 14, 2018, in Arizona after a brief illness. He was 81.

Rusty Staub

Photo Credit: AP / Ron Frehm

Rusty Staub, the Mets' colorful, run-producing humanitarian died March 29 at a hospital in West Palm Beach, Florida. He was 73.

David Humm

Photo Credit: AP / Fred Jewell

David Humm, a former star quarterback at Nebraska who had a long career as a backup in the NFL. The Raiders announced Humm's death on Wednesday. Humm had been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1988 and used a wheelchair for more than 20 years. The Las Vegas Review Journal said he died Tuesday night at a hospital in Las Vegas. He was 65.

Zeke Upshaw

Photo Credit: AP / Gail Burton

The former Hofstra basketball player died on March 26, two days after collapsing during the final minute of an NBA G League game in Michigan between his Grand Rapids Drive and the Long Island Nets. He was 26.

Ed Charles

Photo Credit: Getty Images / Al Bello

The former Mets third baseman and poet laureate on the 1969 World Series championship team died Thursday at his home in East Elmhurst, Queens. He was 84.

Augie Garrido

Photo Credit: AP / Dave Weaver

Garrido, who won five College World Series titles with two schools and still ranks No. 1 on the career victories list in college baseball, died Thursday, March 15, 2018 at 79.

Woody Durham

Photo Credit: AP / Shawn Rocco

The retired "Voice of the Tar Heels," who called North Carolina basketball and football games for four decades, died on Wednesday, March 7, from complications of a neurocognitive disorder, his son said. Durham was 76.

John “Tito” Francona

Photo Credit: AP / Paul Sancya

Former major leaguer John "Tito" Francona, the father of Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona died on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018, at the age of 84. The Indians said the elder Francona died unexpectedly at his home in New Brighton, Pennsylvania.

Edwin Jackson

Photo Credit: AP / Seth Wenig

Indianapolis Colts linebacker Edwin Jackson was one of two men killed early Sunday, Feb. 5, 2018, when a suspected drunken driver struck them as they stood outside their car along a highway in Indianapolis, the team and police said.

Rasual Butler

Photo Credit: Evan Agostini / Invision / AP

Former NBA forward Rasual Butler, 38, and his wife, 31-year-old Leah LaBelle Vladowski, were killed in a single-vehicle rollover crash in Los Angeles early Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018.

Oscar Gamble

Photo Credit: AP

Oscar Gamble, an outfielder who hit 200 home runs and over 17 seasons including seven with the Yankees, died of a rare tumor of the jaw on Jan. 31, 2018. He was 68.

Kevin Towers

Photo Credit: AP / Marcio Jose Sanchez

Kevin Towers, a former general manager for the Padres and Diamondbacks, died from complications of cancer on Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018, at a hospital in San Diego, his friend and former agent Barry Axelrod said. He was 56.

Chameka Scott


Former Baylor women's basketball player Chameka Scott died of cancer on Sunday, Jan. 21, 2018, the school announced. The 33-year-old Scott helped the Lady Bears win the program's first national championship in 2005, when she started 35 of the 36 games. She hit all three of her shots and had four rebounds in the NCAA title game against Michigan State.

Jim Johannson

Photo Credit: Getty Images / Bruce Bennett

Jim Johannson, the general manager of the U.S. Olympic men's hockey team, died on Jan. 21, 2018, just ahead of the Pyeongchang Games. He was 53. Johannson passed away in his sleep that morning, according to USA Hockey.

Tyler Hilinski

Photo Credit: Getty Images / Sean M. Haffey

Tyler Hilinski, a quarterback at Washington State, was found dead in his apartment on Tuesday, Jan. 16, from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.The 21-year-old Hilinski was discovered in his apartment after he didn't show up for practice. The Pullman Police Department says a rifle "was recovered next to Hilinski and a suicide note was found."

Jo Jo White

Photo Credit: AP / Fred Jewell

Jo Jo White, a two-time NBA champion with the Boston Celtics, an Olympic gold medalist and a Basketball Hall of Famer, died Tuesday, Jan. 16, the Celtics announced. He was 71. No cause was provided.

Dan Gurney

Photo Credit: AP

Dan Gurney, the first driver to win in Formula One, IndyCar and NASCAR, died Jan. 14, 2018, from complications of pneumonia, his wife announced in a statement distributed by All American Racers, Inc. He was 86.

Keith Jackson

Photo Credit: AP / Richard Shotwell

Keith Jackson, whose signature phrases like "Whoa, Nelly!" made him the down-home voice of college football during more than five decades as a sportscaster, died Jan. 12, 2018. He was 89.