Broncos announce that Hall of Fame owner Pat Bowlen has died

The Denver Broncos announced early Friday that Hall of Fame owner Pat Bowlen has died.

He was 75.

"We are saddened to inform everyone that our beloved husband and father, Pat Bowlen, passed on to the next chapter of his life late Thursday night peacefully at home surrounded by family," a statement from Bowlen's family reads. "His soul will live on through the Broncos, the city of Denver and all of our fans."

Bowlen bought the Broncos in 1984 and led an era that saw the team become one of the NFL’s flagship franchises. He acted as the team’s CEO until 2014, when he relinquished those duties due to the onset of Alzheimer’s.

7 Super Bowls, 3 wins under Bowlen

The Broncos made seven Super Bowls and won three under his leadership. Between 1986 and 1998, the Broncos played in five Super Bowls with John Elway at quarterback, winning in 1997 and 1998.

The arrival of Peyton Manning in 2012 and development of one of the league’s elite defensive units ushered in a new Super Bowl era. The Broncos won the AFC championship in 2013 and 2015, with the latter team securing the franchise’s third Lombardi Trophy under Bowlen.

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Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen
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Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen
A tribute to Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen stands outside Mile High Stadium, the home of the franchise, Friday, June 14, 2019, in Denver. Bowlen died Thursday night. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen watches his team practice Friday, Jan. 31, 2014, in Florham Park, N.J. The Broncos are scheduled to play the Seattle Seahawks in the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game Sunday, Feb. 2, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
FILE - In this Nov. 17, 2013, file photo, Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen cheers during an NFL football game against the Kansas City Chiefs, in Denver. Bowlen, who stepped down from his daily duties two summers ago as he battled Alzheimer's, is being inducted into the Broncos' ring of fame at halftime Sunday night, Nov. 1, 2015. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey, File)
Newly-signed Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, center, shows off his new jersey with owner Pat Bowlen, left, and executive vice president of football operations John Elway during an NFL footnall news conference at the team's headquarters in Englewood, Colo., on Tuesday, March 20, 2012. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
FILE - In this July 29, 2011, file photo, Denver Broncos NFL football team owner Pat Bowlen looks on during training camp in Englewood, Colo. Pat Bowlen, who transformed the team from also-rans into NFL champions and helped the league usher in billion-dollar television deals, died late Thursday night, June 13, 2019, just under two months before his enshrinement in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He was 75. In a statement posted on the Broncos' website, Bowlen's family said he died peacefully at home surrounded by loved ones. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey, File)
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He became the first NFL owner to see his team win 300 total games in his first 30 years of ownership. The Broncos sold out all 300 home games under Bowlen’s ownership.

Bowlen was a member of the NFL Management Council Executive Committee from 2001-2011. He worked on the league’s negotiations with the players’ union and broadcast partners.

Bowlen elected to Hall of Fame this year

Bowlen was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a member of the 2019 class. He was the 16th owner to be invited to the Hall of Fame. He will be inducted posthumously in August.

He is survived by his wife Annabel, and his seven children Amie, Beth, Patrick, Johnny, Brittany, Annabel and Christianna.

Beth, 48, and Brittany, 29, have expressed interest in taking over ownership of the team, according to the Denver Post.

“Our family wishes to express its sincere gratitude for the outpouring of support we have received in recent years. Heaven got a little bit more orange and blue tonight.

“Pat Bowlen had a competitive spirit with a great sense of humor,” the family’s statement read. “As fun-loving as he was, he always wanted us to understand the big picture. We will forever remember his kindness and humility.”

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