Gale Sayers, the ‘Kansas Comet,” dies

Career for the Chicago Bears led Sayers to be the youngest player ever inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

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September 23, 2020 - 10:31 AM

Former Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka, left, and former Chicago Bears running back Gale Sayers at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the NFL retirement system in 2007. Photo by (Chuck Kennedy/TNS)

CHICAGO — Gale Sayers, the dazzling Chicago Bears running back and kick returner whose injury-shortened career made him the youngest player ever inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, died according to the Pro Football Hall of Fame after a years-long decline in health that included dementia. He was 77.

The “Kansas Comet,” as Sayers was nicknamed, was one of the most agile and elusive ball carriers ever.

“If you wish to see perfection as a running back, you had best get a hold of a film of Gale Sayers,” Bears founder George Halas said in 1977 when he presented Sayers for Hall of Fame enshrinement. “He was poetry in motion. His like will never be seen again.”

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