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San Diego Chargers President Dean Spanos: 'Junior [Seau] Transcended The Game]

As the NFL world comes to terms with the sudden and tragic loss of Junior Seau, former teams and teammates are starting to make official statements regarding the former 12-time Pro Bowler who passed away yesterday at the age of 43. The Chargers, for whom Seau played the bulk of his career, held a press conference yesterday in which everyone was clearly shocked. Team President Dean Spanos tried to put some of it into words.

“I can’t put into words how I’m feeling right now,” said Spanos. “I’m shocked and devastated. Junior was my friend. We all lost a friend today. Junior was an icon in our community. He transcended the game. He wasn’t just a football player, he was so much more. He was loved by everyone in our family, our organization and throughout the NFL. This is just such a tragic loss. One of the worst things I could ever imagine. My prayers go out to Junior’s family. It’s heartbreaking.”

Chargers head coach Norv Turner echoed many of Spanos’ sentiments in his own.

“I have no words to describe the passing of Junior Seau. It is a sad, sad day not only for me, but for the whole sports community. I worked with Junior here and later in Miami. I can tell you no one had more character and true leadership ability than Junior. He brought passion to the game of football that was unmatched. His commitment to charitable causes in the community was inspiring. It was an honor to know him. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

Seau retired from the NFL in 2009.