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Connie Jo
09-27-2011, 01:57 PM
Recently, my good friend and fellow Chiefs Crowd member, Canada aka Dave...inspired my thoughts related to my being a Chiefs fan. In honor of my friendship with Dave, I put my thoughts and feelings related to being a Chiefs fan into words...this is the result, of which I want to share with y'all. GO CHIEFS!!!


Spirit of Red and Gold – Personal Story of a KC Chiefs Fan Reflecting Upon Lamar Hunt.

It seems only appropriate that I begin with the admirable and honorable Lamar Hunt (RIP), when I reflect upon the spirit of Red and Gold within myself. The Red and Gold spirit that Lamar Hunt had within himself was unquestionably the greatest of all as the founder of my beloved Kansas City Chiefs. Most people, including Chiefs fans, think of Lamar as the founder and owner of the Kansas City Chiefs, but I also consider him to be the greatest and most legendary Chiefs fan of all.

Lamar never missed a Chiefs game in over 40 years, with exception of when he was hospitalized very ill. It was said that Lamar was very upset when he missed his first Chiefs game as a result of serious illness. He did not want his family to be with him in the hospital, rather he asked them to continue their tradition of attending the Chiefs game as always, they respected his wishes. As I watched the game on TV, I somewhat remember the media focusing cameras on Mrs. Hunt during that first game Lamar missed. The anchors commented admirably of the Hunts, mentioning how loyal Lamar and his wife were to their beloved Chiefs, and how it was the first game in franchise history Lamar had missed.

Lamar was the ultimate passionate fan of professional football and his Kansas City Chiefs. How could any person not think of him as such when reflecting upon the history of how Lamar came to form his own league, the AFL, and his own team franchise? Imagine if you will, that had the NFL allowed Lamar to become a franchise owner in their league…there would be no AFL, no KC Chiefs franchise or other franchise originating in the AFL, no Super Bowl, no big merger of leagues, and so on. The NFL would not have become as it is known today had it not been for Lamar Hunts determination, courage, vision, inner character strength, nor had he not been a passionate and dedicated fan of professional football.

Lamar Hunt became one of the most influential and respected men in the history of professional football. Anyone who knew Lamar admired and respected him as an NFL franchise owner, businessman, family man, friend, and person. He gave so much of himself personally and financially to many. He donated his time often and contributed millions to organizations involved with improving the Kansas City community, and other communities helping those need. I have spoken with several former Chiefs players over the years, and when any spoke of Lamar it was always with much kindness, respect, and admiration. Former KC Chief NFL HOF linebacker, Bobby Bell, told me himself that the Hunt family had been very good and kind to him. It was obvious from his heartfelt words he loved and respected Lamar and his wife. Marcus Allen stated in his HOF Induction Speech the following, “Mr. Lamar Hunt, one of the kindest, most generous, most thoughtful man I ever met in my entire life.”

Lamar was an extremely wealthy man, yet he was humble and simplistic in personality. He didn’t travel by private jet, rather by commercial airliner. He didn’t flaunt or boast his wealth. He wasn’t arrogant or superior in attitude. He was generous, kind, compassionate, and caring. He treated all with politeness and respect, including the fans of his Chiefs. He was a person defining the words respect, loyalty, class, grace, and he defined the word ‘diehard fan’ from my perspective as well. As a loyal passionate Chiefs fan himself, Lamar led by example and established an honorable, admirable, and respectable standard for all Chiefs fans to follow. He led by example as an individual in the same manner. We all have known people who have influenced our lives positively, those of whom we look to as a leadership example…Lamar was one of those people for me personally. I admired and respected him not only as the founder and owner of my beloved KC Chiefs, but also as a passionate loyal fan and as an individual.

My dad became a KC Chiefs fan in 1963, I was about 7 years old then. I had shown an interest in professional football during my childhood years connected to my dads passion for football. Such as, I had a puppy love crush on Broadway Joe. My dad did not like the NY Jets nor Joe Namath at all. Truth be told, I speculate he was jealous that so many women, including his young daughter, had a crush on Joe. My crush on Joe led to my rooting for the Jets in Super Bowl III, of which my dad was not happy about, hahaha. He wagered me $20.00 that the Jets would not win as Joe Namath boasted publicly they indeed would. I won that bet, of which my dad was not happy with my gloating or boasting following the Jets victory. I was sent to my room, and do not recall ever collecting the $20.00, hahaha.

My first memory related to the KC Chiefs I can connect to becoming a passionate Chiefs fan myself, came the following year when my dad watched the Super Bowl IV game on TV. I remember bits and pieces of the game, but what I remember most of all was my dad yelling in excitement when the Chiefs had a good play or scored, and of course when they won his excitement was overwhelming. I believe that day to be the day my dads spirit of Red and Gold was inherited and born within myself.

The past 41 years as a Chiefs fan have been a blessing in my life. I have so many priceless wonderful lifetime memories connected to being a Chiefs fan. Such as, watching Chiefs games on TV among family and friends, as well as attending games at Arrowhead. I have cherished memories of attending other events related to my Chiefs, such as the Draft Day Party annually hosted at Arrowhead by the Chiefs franchise. I have met many Chiefs fans over the years of who I’ve become close friends with, that I wouldn’t have met had we not been fellow Chiefs fans. I have awesome memories of collecting Chiefs memorabilia, and of meeting Chiefs players past and current. Some of my fan memories are in their own right a story to be told.

A decade or so ago, I took the time to write Lamar Hunt a letter. I hand wrote it, as back then I didn't have a computer, or any source for writing a letter other than old fashioned pen and paper. I can't remember word for word what I wrote to him, as it's been too many years ago. The purpose of my writing to Lamar was to personally thank him for bringing the Kansas City Chiefs to Kansas City, of which in turn brought the Chiefs into my life. I wanted him to know how much the Chiefs meant to me and had contributed to my life of which I considered to be of irreplaceable priceless value.

How do you thank someone who is more or less a stranger, for bringing to your life over four decades of sentimental cherished memories created among family and friends, and for all he had positively contributed to my life as a person? I only knew of one way, simply to speak from my heart with pen and paper in hand, so that is what I did. I addressed the letter to Lamar Hunt and used Arrowheads general address. I didn't know if Lamar would even receive my letter of gratitude, nor did I know if he would have time to read 'fan mail', so to speak.

A couple of weeks passed and much to my surprise I received a large mailer envelope in the mail one day with a return address from the Kansas City Chiefs. Inside was an 8x10 photograph of Lamar wearing a black business suit, with two KC Chief lappel pins, and a neck tie of which the design appears to be that of Indian headdress feathers. It is signed, “Best regards, Lamar Hunt, Kansas City Chiefs.” Also enclosed was a handwritten note that simply stated, “thank you Connie, your continued support and loyalty as a fan of the Kansas City Chiefs is greatly appreciated”…it did not have a name signed at the end, so I’m not sure if Lamar wrote it or not, regardless, I cherish the photo and memory it has attached to it. The photo is matted and framed honorably displayed on a wall in my living area.

My gratitude to Lamar goes much beyond being grateful for the years of priceless memories, beyond the photo he sent to me. I'm also grateful to Lamar for inspiring me to become the loyal quality of fan I am today. The NFL and the game of professional football have evolved over the years. Society has also changed since Lamar founded the AFL and his KC Chiefs franchise in 1960. As human nature often does, people have changed along with society, and so has some fan mentality.

I don’t expect others to do as I do, I am only accountable for my own choices in life, live and let live. I am only accountable for my own behavior as a KC Chiefs fan, as such, I honorably choose to follow Lamars example with setting a standard of respect and loyalty representing as a KC Chiefs fan. I don’t boo my team, nor in an insulting manner bash my Chiefs when they lose, nor a player for errors made. I don’t intentionally insult fellow Chiefs or NFL fans whom I disagree with in opinion or philosophy, nor for any reason.

I support my beloved KC Chiefs team and all related in the same honorable and respectful manner Lamar Hunt did. I choose to do so in honor of his memory… it is my way of giving back to Lamar for all he brought to my life. I’m paying it forward in a sense.

RIP Lamar Hunt, forever remembered and loved by many, including me…a loyal Chiefs fan 41 years strong.

http://www.chiefscrowd.com/forums/images/imported/2011/09/37.jpg

#58ChiefsFan
09-27-2011, 07:28 PM
That's a nice read CJ, thank you for posting that.

:chiefs:

We all would be better served to do as you do and not just as Chiefs fans.

Connie Jo
09-27-2011, 10:56 PM
That's a nice read CJ, thank you for posting that.

:chiefs:

We all would be better served to do as you do and not just as Chiefs fans.

Well, what brought this about was so much negativity that's been occurring among fellow Chiefs fans since pre-season. Fans began becoming angry and bickering among one another when pre-season games were lost. Of course, that anger intensified when we lost the season opener, more when we lost to the Lions, and even more with the loss to San Diego.

I've witnessed the anger at Arrowhead among fans. Chiefs fans physically and verbally fighting one another at Arrowhead. I've witnessed the verbal arguments in some Chiefs Facebook conversations between countless fans. Some of which, became very ugly to the point of fans throwing personal foul insults to other fans and their family members, making threats of violence as well.

One night it all got to me to the point of tears. So many Chiefs fans were behaving as they themselves accuse Raider fans of acting...physical conflicts at games, foul cruel insults towards their own fans and team, lack of support for their team and players as a result of losing, booing at games, yelling obscenities at Chiefs players on the field. For years Chiefs fans have labeled such fans as bandwagon or fairweather fans. Well, many Chiefs fans were behaving no differently than those they dislike the behavior of.

I began to think of Lamar, how sad he would be if he were here to see a fan base he once took much pride in evolving into one of no respect for fellow fans...that's when the tears fell, and my own inner anger stirred. I wasn't angry at my team for losing like many fans are, rather angry at the lack of respect among fellow fans. My biggest fear isn't that we will never win a Super Bowl...it is that I won't be able to attend a game safely at Arrowhead, or voice my oppposing opinion in debate without me and my family being attacked on a personal level. In my opinion, that would be by far a greater travesty and injustice than the Chiefs never winning another Super Bowl.

Anyway, Dave and I both became victims of such attacks by fellow fans recently interacting on Facebook. All we were guilty of was voicing opposing views as to why the Chiefs have fallen since 2010. Debates are healthy, they're a way to vent frustrations, sometimes they get heated...but to attack someone or their family, threaten violence against them...is not healthy, and it's wrong. Chiefs fans for years have been respected and admired as being among the best in the NFL...I want it to stay that way. I can't change the world, but the least that I can do is care, and try to make a difference through writing and influencing positively any way I can.

:bananen_smilies046: GO CHIEFS!!!!