Super Bowl Champion Killed in Horrific Plane Crash


NFL fans are mourning the loss of a legend today as former tight end Russ Francis was killed in a horrific plane crash at the Lake Placid Airport on Sunday, October 1. It was reported that the Super Bowl champion had recently became a co-owner of the local airline and was onboard the plane when it experienced difficulties after takeoff.

He is remembered for his accomplishments on the football field as well as his commitment to keeping air travel in Lake Placid local.

Born and raised in Kailua, Hawaii, Russ Francis was determined to make a name for himself beyond the islands. After college at Oregon, he was drafted into the Patriots and later traded to the 49ers, where he would go on to help them win Super Bowl XIX alongside legendary quarterback Joe Montana. As a professional player, he had 393 catches for 5,262 yards and 40 touchdowns across 13 seasons, three of which were Pro Bowls.

Francis’ off-the-field life was equally impressive as his football career. He worked as both a broadcaster and professional wrestler throughout different stages of his life according to multiple outlets.

His passion for flying however led him back home where he became co-owner of Lake Placid Airways this past July – an airline that offers charter and scenic flights around the region. His commitment to keeping air service local resonated with many: “I came from Hawaii…that got overdeveloped really fast when I was growing up,” said Francis during an interview with Lake Placid News in August – words that have taken on even greater significance following his passing last Sunday.

As we mourn this tragic loss, let us remember all that Russ Francis accomplished during his lifetime – from becoming one of the first players from Hawaii to make it into pro football; to helping bring home Super Bowl XIX trophy, broadcasting, wrestling, owning an airline…he did it all.

This true legend will be tremendously missed by all who knew him – may he rest in peace forevermore.

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