Social Media Reacts To The Passing Of Patriots Legend Gino Cappelletti
The New England Patriots lost have tragically lost one of the integral and cornerstone members of the franchise from its early years.
On Thursday, an announcement from the team stated that former WR/K and radio broadcaster Gino Cappelletti had passed away. He was 89 years old.
An original member of the Boston Patriots during their inaugural American Football League (AFL) season in 1960, Cappelletti spent the next 11 seasons with the team, winning the 1964 AFL MVP Award, five AFL All-Star honors, and leading the AFL in scoring five times.
Following his playing career, Cappelletti became the second player to be inducted into the Patriots Hall of Fame after John Hannah. In 2009, Cappelletti earned a spot on the Patriots’ 50th Anniversary Team. His number 20 is also retired by the team.
As of 2022, Cappelletti ranks third in Patriots history in total scoring with 1,130 career points, tenth with 292 receptions, and 12th with 4,589 receiving yards.
From 1988 to 2011, Cappelletti put together a just as memorable second career as a radio broadcaster doing color commentary during Patriots games alongside play-by-play announcer Gil Santos.
New England Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft released the following statement about Cappelletti’s passing;
“My heart aches after learning of Gino Cappelletti’s passing this morning,” said Kraft. “For the first 51 years of this franchise’s history, Gino contributed as an all-star player, assistant coach and broadcaster. You couldn’t be a Patriots fan during that era and not be a fan of Gino’s. The Patriots have had many iconic, fan-favorite players over the years. Gino was the first. I remember watching him play in 1960 and throughout his career. He was one of the AFL’s biggest stars, becoming the first Patriots player to earn league MVP honors and retiring as the league’s all-time leading scorer. He became the second player in franchise history to earn Patriots Hall of Fame induction and I will always believe he deserves to be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. As great of a player as he was, he was an even better person and storyteller. On behalf of my family and the entire Patriots organization, we extend our heartfelt condolences to Gino’s wife, Sandy, their three daughters, Gina, Cara and Christina, and their 10 grandchildren, as well as the many others who will be mourning his loss.”
The Patriots shared the following video tribute commemorating Cappelletti’s life and career.
Former Patriots Drew Bledsoe, Scott Zolak, Tom Brady, Rob Ninkovich, and GM Scott Pioli all shared their condolences over social media.
Truly saddened to hear of the passing of the great Gino Cappelletti. Legendary human and a great friend to all who knew him. Rest In Peace Gino.
— Drew Bledsoe (@DrewBledsoe) May 13, 2022
Awful news today. Class act as a player & broadcaster. I learned so much from Gino and Gil. Will miss him dearly, our family’s condolences to his wife Sandy, the kids & all grandchildren. His stories on the road were legendary. Will never forget RIP Gino https://t.co/2Z5iojOwCI
— Scott Zolak (@scottzolak) May 12, 2022
and Rob Ninkovich too pic.twitter.com/grnj4dDkxy
— Robert Alvarez (@ralvarez617) May 13, 2022
Love & prayers to the family of Gino Cappelletti
Gino was a friend, voice of wisdom & adopted Godfather during my time @Patriots – always had a hug, smile & "my paisan" for me
His stories/history lessons of the #AFL & #NFL were magic & calmed me on many road trips
Godspeed paisan pic.twitter.com/NDOwaz47Lb
— Scott Pioli (@scottpioli51) May 13, 2022
Posted Under: Patriots Video
Tags: Drew Bledsoe Gil Santos Gino Cappelletti Rob Ninkovich Scott Pioli Scott Zolak Tom Brady