Death is never something that we enjoy having to cover – and if you are a fan of the Philadelphia Eagles this death might hit you a little harder.
Irv Cross who was a former NFL star and broadcasting stud who died two years ago at the age of 81, had stage 4 chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the Boston University CTE Center said Tuesday.
“Mr. Cross was diagnosed during life with mild cognitive impairment and was found at autopsy to have stage 4 chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), which is the most severe type of the disease,” said Dr. Ann McKee, director of Boston University’s CTE Center, in a statement. “He is one of the 345 former NFL players diagnosed with CTE by the BU CTE Center and UNITE brain bank team out of 376 former NFL players studied.”
“For the last five years of his life Irv stopped being able to do the things he loved and his problems with his balance, memory, and delusions, were very embarrassing and depressing for him,” Liz Cross said in a statement. “His life became a constant struggle, and he suspected it was from CTE. Now that we know for sure, Irv would want others to learn about the disease and the risks of playing tackle football, especially for children.”
That is tough to hear. We all know that can happen when your head is getting banged around constantly. I feel like if current players got to see how Irv Cross was doing before he passed that some players would end up retiring earlier. I know that no one wants to see someone struggle to move around like Irv did his last few years of life.
Cross was a two-time Pro Bowl cornerback who was drafted in 1961, played nine seasons in the NFL. He played six seasons for the Philadelphia Eagles and three for the Los Angeles Rams.