Dick Butkus bio-age, early life, career, illness and death.

Dick Butkus

Dick Butkus also known as Richard Marvin Butkus is an American Football Player. His position was a linebacker for the Chicago Bears. He also worked as sports commentator and also and an actor. During his stay in Chicago Bears, Butkus was a known to be a hardworking and fierce linebacker.

Dick Butkus age and early life

So, he was born in December 9th 1942 in Chicago, Illinois, USA. His parents were electrician father, John who was an immigrant from Ludhiana and his mother was the late Emma Butkus who worked as a laundry lady. At birth, Butkus was 6.1Kg, heavy indeed. He was the last in the family of eight children. Butkus spent his early life at Roseland in the south of Chicago. His call to American football developed when he was still young. He used to be a fan of the Chicago Cardinals of the National Football League, NFL.

Dicks brother played for three colleges and later the Cardinals but later quit due to an injured knee. At the age of fifteen years, he used to be a mover together with his four brothers until he was nineteen.  At high school, Dick played football as a linebacker, Panter and a fullback.

Where did Dick Butkus Study?

Richard Butkus went to Chicago Vocational High school. As a freshman, Butkus was he assisted his school team to gain 55 teams in only 8 games. Chicago-Sun Times awarded Butkus as the high school player of the year. He later joined University of Illinois in 1962 and graduated in 1964.  At campus, his team was announced as the 1962 All Big Ten Conference Football team by the Associated Press (AP).

Butkus Career

After his endeavors in football, at high school. He developed his career at the university and played all his campus life for the University of Illinois team. In 1963, Football all American Team nominated Butkus and he earned the first time honors for all major fields.

In 1964, Butkus was made the co-captain of the team and the sporting news. Also, he was named as the Illini’s most Valuable player for two consecutive years. At completion of his studies by 1964, Butkus had acquired 374 tackles, including 143 in 1963.

In 1965 NFL draft, Butkus was selected as the third overall. The AFL draft of 1965 also selected him and was second overall. However, Butkus decided to go with Chicago bears giving NFL a victorious win. He decided to work with the Bears as it was his hometown’s team. All through his National Football League Career, Dick is recorded to have 1020 tackles.

Dick Butkus at work

Is Butkus Married?

Dick was married to high school beau Hellen Essenhart from 1963. Together within Hellen, they had three children. These are, Matt Butkus, Richard M. and Nikki Butkus. Upon his retirement, Butkus and his family relocated to Malibu California. His son Matt plays for the USC Trojans as a defensive lineman.

What Honors and Awards did Butkus Have?

Butkus receive so many awards and honors as an American Football Player. These include; Hall of Fame in 1983. Also, in 1999, he was named Walter Camp Football Hall of Fame All Century team. He was named the 1960s All Decade Team and also the 1970s All Decade Team. Other awards include, Pro Football Hall of Fame, the Top 100 NFL’s Greatest Players, NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team. In 2019, NFL named him as its 100th Anniversary All-Time Team. Butkus was ranked number one on NFL Top 10. Butkus colleagues and opponents has accepted that Butkus is the most fierce player they ever encountered.

Illness and Death

All through his playing life, Butkus got so much injuries that he sustained till his death. His knee was replaced using a metal unit that left his leg 1.5 shorter than the other one. This affected his neck, hips and back. He got a nerve damage in 2002 that made him loose muscle strength. In 2021, Dick Butkus went under a heart operation to remove ill muscles in his artery.

On 5th October 2023, Richard Marvin Butkus passed on at an age of 80 years. He died while at his retirement home in Malibu, California, USA.

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