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TAMPA, Fla. -- Buccaneers and Manchester United owner Malcolm Glazer died Wednesday, the NFL team announced. He was 85.
Glazer had been in poor health in recent years and his sons Joel, Bryan and Ed had taken over the day-to-day operations of the Bucs. Glazer had a pair of strokes in April 2006, leaving him with impaired speech and limited mobility in his right arm and leg.
"Malcolm Glazer was the guiding force behind the building of a Super Bowl-champion organization. His dedication to the community was evident in all he did, including his leadership in bringing Super Bowls to Tampa Bay," NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. "Malcolm's commitment to the Bucs, the NFL and the people of the Tampa Bay region are the hallmarks of his legacy. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Linda, their six children and the entire Glazer family."
Glazer bought the Bucs in 1995 for a then-NFL record $192 million when they were one of the league's worst franchises. The team's fortunes soon changed as Glazer hired coach Tony Dungy and switched the team's uniforms from orange and white to red, white and pewter.
The Bucs won their only Super Bowl championship in the 2002 season. Since Glazer bought the team, the Bucs have seven playoff berths and five playoff wins. Glazer also was instrumental in bringing two Super Bowls to Tampa and in the construction of Raymond James Stadium.
"He was a friend and a trailblazer," Jon Gruden, who was the coach of that 2002 team, said Wednesday. "I'll miss him and I thank him for believing in me. My condolences to the Glazer family and to the Bucs organization."
Glazer raised his profile in 2005 with a $1.47 billion takeover of Manchester United that was bitterly opposed by fans of one of the world's richest soccer clubs.
|The Bucs have been to the playoffs seven times since Malcolm Glazer bought them in 1995, winning the Super Bowl in the 2002 season.|
Manchester United won five Premier League titles (2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2013) since Glazer bought the team and also captured the Champions League title in 2008.
"The thoughts of everyone at Manchester United are with the family tonight,'' Manchester United said in a statement.
In announcing Glazer's passing, the Buccaneers said a long-established succession plan is in place that will assure the NFL team will remain in the family for generations to come. Glazer's wife, five sons and daughter will continue as the team's owners.
A private funeral service will be held, and a celebration of his life will be announced at a later date.
Born in Rochester, New York, the son of a watch-parts salesman, Glazer began working for the family business when he was 8 and took over the operation as a teenager when his father died in 1943.
As president and CEO of First Allied Corp., the holding company for the family business interests, he invested in mobile-home parks, restaurants, food service equipment, marine protein, television stations, real estate, natural gas and oil production and other ventures.
In March 2010, Forbes ranked him as tied for the world's 400th-richest person, estimating his net worth at $2.4 billion. The magazine's separate ranking of Americans put him and his family at 139th in fall 2008.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.