Hall of Fame Mets Pitcher Tom Seaver Dies at 75 from Complications of Lewy Body Dementia and COVID-19
Legendary New York Mets pitcher Tom Seaver has died. He was 75.
The Hall of Famer died in his sleep in the early hours on Monday due to complications of Lewy Body Dementia and novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the National Baseball Hall of Fame announced in a statement Wednesday.
"We are heartbroken to share that our beloved husband and father has passed away," his wife Nancy and daughters Sarah and Anne said in a statement to the Hall of Fame. "We send our love out to his fans, as we mourn his loss with you."
Jeff Wilpon, COO of the New York Mets, along with his father Fred Wilpon, the club's majority owner, also released a joint statement on Seaver’s passing through the Mets' Twitter account.
"We are devastated to learn of the passing of Mets legend and Baseball Hall of Famer Tom Seaver," the Wilpons said. "Tom was nicknamed ‘The Franchise’ and ‘Tom Terrific’ because of how valuable he truly was to our organization and our loyal fans, as his #41 was the first player number retired by the organization in 1988."
"He was simply the greatest Mets player of all-time, and among the best to ever play the game which culminated with his near-unanimous induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1992," the statement added.
"Beyond the multitude of awards, records, accolades, World Series championship, All-Star appearances, and just overall brilliance, we will always remember Tom for his passion and devotion to his family, the game of baseball, and his vineyard," the Wilpons continued.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Nancy, daughters Sarah and Anne and four grandsons Thomas, William, Henry and Tobin," the statement concluded.
In 1969, Seaver helped the Mets win their first World Series championship. He also won the Cy Young Award also in 1969 and led the National League with 25 wins.
Seaver was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1992.
The famed athlete is also a 12-time All-Star and his number 41 was retired by the Mets.
Seaver also pitched for the Cincinnati Reds, the Chicago White Sox and the Boston Red Sox before retiring in 1986.
Also mourning the loss of Seaver was MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred.
"I am deeply saddened by the death of Tom Seaver, one of the greatest pitchers of all-time. Tom was a gentleman who represented the best of our National Pastime," he said in a statement on Monday. "He was synonymous with the New York Mets and their unforgettable 1969 season. After their improbable World Series Championship, Tom became a household name to baseball fans – a responsibility he carried out with distinction throughout his life."
"On behalf of Major League Baseball, I extend my condolences to Tom’s family, his admirers throughout our game, Mets fans, and the many people he touched," he added.
In May 2019, Seaver’s family announced the news that he would be retiring from public life in a statement through the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum following his dementia diagnosis.
"The Seaver family announced today that Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Seaver has recently been diagnosed with dementia. Tom will continue to work in his beloved vineyard at his California home, but has chosen to completely retire from public life," the statement said at the time.
"The family is deeply appreciative of those who have supported Tom throughout his career, on and off the field, and who do so now by honoring his request for privacy. We join Tom in sending warmest regards to everyone,” the statement concluded.
Seaver was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia, the same brain disorder Robin Williams had when he died by suicide in August 2014 at age 63.
Caused by abnormal protein deposits that build up over time and disrupt normal brain function, the disease is particularly challenging to diagnose because its laundry list of symptoms varies from person to person which can include memory and thinking problems, movement problems, hallucinations, changes in behavior, anxiety and depression.
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