OT - Lions great Alex Karras has Kidney Failure

Submitted by MikeCohodes on October 9th, 2012 at 1:29 PM

Former Iowa Hawkeye and Detroit Lion 4 time probowler Alex Karras has kidney failure and days to live according to doctors and his family. 

After football he turned to acting, starring as Mongo in Blazing Saddles & the dad on Webster. 

My thoughts and prayers go out to him & his family in this difficult time.



EDIT - He has passed away today 10/10/12.  http://www.tmz.com/2012/10/10/alex-karras-dies-blazing-saddles-star-dead-at/



October 9th, 2012 at 1:55 PM ^

Very sad news indeed. Thoughts go out to his family during this time.

During his time at Iowa, He won the Outland Trophy in 1957 and played on the Hawkeyes' 1956 Rose Bowl team as well. He was All Big Ten twice and a consensus All-American.

He will always be best known as Mongo and the dad on "Webster" when it comes to his entertainment career, as the OP notes, but to highlight some of his other notable work, he was also Sheriff Wallace in the first Porky's film, as well as Squash Bernstein in "Victor, Victoria". He also had numerous guest appearances on shows like" M*A*S*H", "Arliss" and "The Odd Couple".



October 9th, 2012 at 2:00 PM ^

When I was 12 years old I went to Cranbrook and back in 1971 the Detroit Lions used to practice on the same fields until their first game we did (believe it or not).  We actually shared locker rooms and showers and our little 7th grade team practiced on the same fields as the Lions.  The Lions head coach Joe Schmidt even had security guards everywhere and we had to show our student ID's to the guards to get on the fields each day to practice.  

Anyways one day I twisted my ankle or something and had to go up to the locker room before practice was over.  As I entered the empty locker room (or so I thought) to shower and wait for my mom to pick me up I literally got knocked over by a VERY mad Alex Karras who was swearing and shouting at me all the way out of the locker room and down to his car.  I had no clue what was going on but knew he was really pissed off at something and I was the beneficiary of his anger.  I was more than a bit scared I might add.

I found out later that night he'd been cut by the Lions that day.  My guess is I was the first person he saw after he was told.