USA Today

San Francisco 49ers Great Dwight Clark Dies at 61, After Battle with ALS

June 04, 2018 - 4:36 pm

(KNX 1070) -- Dwight Clark, a former San Francisco 49ers wide receiver  passed away Monday at 61, after a battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as ALS.

Clark's wife, Kelly, tweeted from her husband’s official account:

"I’m heartbroken to tell you that today I lost my best friend and husband. He passed peacefully surrounded by many of the people he loved most. I am thankful for all of Dwight’s friends, teammates and 49ers fans who have sent their love during his battle with ALS. Kelly Clark."

Clark played for the San Francisco 49ers from 1979 to 1987 and won two Super Bowls with the team.

Clark suspected his diagnosis of ALS, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, was caused by playing football, although there has not been any definitive connection between the game and the disease.

In October, on “Dwight Clark Day” at Levi’s Stadium, Clark made his last major public appearance. During halftime of the game, Clark addressed fans, referring to his ALS as a “little thing,” he was going through and thanked his former teammates.

Clark was one of quarterback Joe Montana's favorite receivers. Clark historically caught the winning touchdown pass thrown by Montana in the Niners conference title game in January 1982 – the play was immortalized as "The Catch."