ESPN NFL Reporter Chris Mortensen Dead at 72

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The sports broadcasting world is in mourning.

Chris Mortensen, who worked as an NFL reporter and analyst for ESPN for more than 30 years, died March 3, his family told the sports outlet. The award-winning journalist, who retired last year, was 72.

“Mort was widely respected as an industry pioneer and universally beloved as a supportive, hard-working teammate,” ESPN chairman Jimmy Pitaro said in a statement. “He covered the NFL with extraordinary skill and passion, and was at the top of his field for decades. He will truly be missed by colleagues and fans, and our hearts and thoughts are with his loved ones.”

Chris is survived by his wife of 39 years, Micki Mortensen, 65, and their son Alex Mortensen, 38, a University of Alabama at Birmingham football coach and former quarterback.

Chris, an Army veteran from California, began his journalism career as an investigative sports reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, mostly covering the Atlanta Braves and Atlanta Falcons. In 1987, he won the George Polk Award for reporting. Throughout his career, he received 18 awards in journalism and was nominated for two Pulitzer Prizes.

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