Ex-Rams player Snow dies at age 62

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

The former receiver was a Rams broadcaster for more than 10 seasons.

ST. LOUIS -- Jack Snow, a wide receiver for the Los Angeles Rams for 11 seasons and a Rams broadcaster for several years, died Monday night, the team has confirmed.

Snow, 62, had been hospitalized on and off for the past two months with a staph infection. His family was with him when he died at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, said Duane Lewis, a team spokesman.

"The family would like to thank everyone for their support during this time," the Rams said in a prepared statement.

Lewis said Snow became ill in November. He was getting better, but was hospitalized last month.

Snow, a color analyst on the Rams' radio broadcasts even before the team moved here 10 years ago, was last in the booth Nov. 20 during a home loss to Arizona. He has missed the last five games. The Rams played their season finale on New Year's Day in Dallas.

Snow has been part of the Rams virtually since being drafted out of Notre Dame in 1965. He spent 11 years as a player with the team when it was in Los Angeles, retiring in 1975.

He was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1967 and still is among the team leaders in several receiving categories.

In addition to his broadcast duties, Snow helped out during practice, voluntarily, mostly with receivers.

"I remember my first year, obviously I'm a free agent nobody and one of the last guys in the receiver line, and he was always paying particular attention to me, making sure my details were right and giving me positive feedback," receiver Dane Looker said recently.

"A guy like Jack Snow -- you're going to miss him."

Staph bacteria are a common cause of skin infections. Healthy people might carry the bacteria on their skin and in their noses. Still, the germ can cause serious surgical wound infections, bloodstream infections and pneumonia.

Lewis did not know how Snow got the infection, most common among those who live in close proximity to others. That can include sports teams. In fact, the Rams had an outbreak of the infections in 2003.

Five members of the team developed drug-resistant infections after sustaining turf burns, and two or three members of the San Francisco 49ers developed infections after playing the Rams early that season. The outbreak was the subject of an article last year in the New England Journal of Medicine. The players were not identified.

In August, Joe Vitt, who was then linebackers coach, was hospitalized for three days with a staph infection in his left hand. Vitt served as interim head coach since October, when Mike Martz stepped aside due to endocarditis, a bacterial infection of the lining of the heart.

Snow is survived by three children, Michelle, J.T. and Stephanie.

Funeral arrangements were not immediately announced.

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