Lamar Hunt's Fight Shows True Spirit

Being a Kansas City Chiefs fan my entire life, the name Lamar Hunt has been embedded in my mind since I first met him when I was six years old. My father told me he was the owner of my favorite football team as we were introduced and I shook his hand. Through the years I've met him several times. Each time he was as gracious a man as I've ever met. He has always reminded me of my grandfather.

When I started Warpaint Illustrated four years ago the first Chiefs activity I participated in was the 2004 NFL Draft. It was my first time at Arrowhead as a member of the media. It was a day I'll never forget for many reasons, but the most important was the privilege of greeting Lamar Hunt once again.

I was pounding away at my keyboard on the second day, I noticed someone walking down on the field. It was none other than Mr. Hunt. Needless to say, I was a bit dumbfounded as to why he would be walking around an empty stadium.

I later came to find out he was writing down the names of advertisers for an upcoming Kansas City Wizards game. Knowing Mr. Hunt, he probably wanted to send each of then a thank-you note for supporting his other passion – professional soccer.

After listening to Chiefs President Carl Peterson address the media on Tuesday, it was clear that he's been affected by the news that Mr. Hunt's health is in Gods hands.

"He's giving it everything he can," said Peterson. "The doctors are also. We hope and pray for good results."

That's always been a common theme for Mr. Hunt. He gives 110 percent effort toward everything. He's made Kansas City his home despite deep-rooted Texas stakes that have earned him a vast fortune.

And he's spread out that fortune in our city with endeavors like the Chiefs, the Wizards, Worlds of Fun, Oceans of Fun and Hunt Midwest. He's given millions to charities. More importantly he's been the class of the forefathers who have shaped Kansas City into one of the greatest cities in the country.

Lamar Hunt put Kansas City on the map. When every single door closed on his efforts to purchase an NFL team in the late 50's he called up a few of his billionaire buddies and founded the AFL.

When he met Roe H. Bartle, the mayor of Kansas City in the early 60's, the two forged a bond. A handshake would lead to the Dallas Texans becoming the Kansas City Chiefs. That seems like a long time ago.

Today, our hearts and prayers are with Mr. Hunt and his family. This husband, father, grandfather, friend and confidant to so many people is in a real fight - one that currently, he's not winning.

This isn't a eulogy, because Mr. Hunt is a true fighter. He's one of the few men I've met that have lived up to every expectation you could ever have for an individual.

In my own life, my grandfather instilled and reinforced most of my good character. He also introduced me to football. He was a Packers fan before moving to Kansas City in the 70's, but he and I had a passion for our teams that became a part of our lives forever.

Because of his love for this city and the great people who make up Chiefs Nation, Mr. Hunt has given us something that we'll never ever be able to pay back in our lifetimes.

He gave us our Kansas City Chiefs football team.

The Chiefs are our football team. Yes, the Hunt Family owns them, but from the first play at Municipal Stadium to the last one on Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium, the Chiefs are as much the fans' team as they are Hunt's.

That can't be said in most other NFL cities. Today we all need to pull together and say a prayer. We need to do that because our 74-year old owner would do the same for each and every one of us.

Godspeed, Lamar Hunt, and know that every single Chiefs fan is praying that you get another day, another week or another year to share your life with your family, friends and the millions of Kansas City Chiefs fans who are thankful for your kindness, love and support that you have gracefully shared with each of us the last 43 years.

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