New Orleans Saints Hero Tom Dempsey Has Died

By Ben Hamill - April 06 2020

New Orleans Saints Hero Tom Dempsey Has Died

Ex-NFL record kicker and New Orleans Saints football hero Tom Dempsey has died from Covid-19, the disease caused by the novel human Coronavirus. The 73-year-old, long-time NFL Saints sweetheart and the man whose 64-yard field goal remained unbeaten for 43 years, was a resident at a New Orleans home for assisted living prior to his passing. It was also here at the home, along with 14 other residents, that Dempsey had contracted the virus. New Orleans is particularly hard-hit by the spread and deadly effects of the Coronavirus. Dempsey is survived by his wife, Charlene, along with his children and grandchildren.

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Dempsey was first admitted at the residence for assisted living roughly 7 years ago, after he had been diagnosed with severe dementia. But his was a life marked by so much more than tragedy and becoming a victim of a deadly global pandemic. Dempsey lived a life in firm defiance of adversity and was in many ways a living breathing beacon of hope to all those facing adversities of their own.

Overcoming Adversity

The life of 73-year-old Dempsey was a testament to the defiant and victorious power of the human spirit, and according to Saints owner Gayle Benson, he lived a life that showed that no setback need ever impede on anyone’s resolve to follow a dream and live an aspiration. Benson of course referred to the NFL legend’s long and purely extraordinary career playing 11 seasons for the NFL after having been born without toes on his right foot – which just so happened to also double up as his golden kicking foot.

Dempsey wore a specially adapted boot with which to kick. This very shoe is on display in the Pro Football Hall of Fame and is the same boot that inspired the well-known Dempsey rule in pro-football regarding the shape of specially adapted footwear worn by physically disabled players.

A Life Of Victories

The ex-Saints hero joined the NFL team fresh out of college back in 1969 and only a year later went on to set the 43-year-long record whilst playing against the Detroit Lions. His record was eventually broken when Denver Broncos’ kicker Matt Prater performed a 64-yard kick in 2013. He during his career also went on to play for various other NFL teams, including the Los Angeles Rams, the Philadelphia Eagles, Buffalo Bills and the Houston Oilers. He eventually retired in 1979, after which he had returned to become a permanent resident of New Orleans.

Daughter Ashely Dempsey confirmed her late father’s death on Saturday past, and also confirmed the Coronavirus to have been the official cause of his death. The local Orleans Parish coroner has yet to issue his official report regarding the cause of Dempsey’s death. New Orleans has been reeling under the gravitational push of the pandemic, and this after only a couple of years ago having managed to pick itself up out of the trail of destruction left behind by Hurricane Katrina. New Orleans is, not unlike what Tom Dempsey used to, doing the best that it can with the hand it’s been dealt.


When did Tom Dempsey die?

4th of April 2020.

Where did Tom Dempsey die?

At an assisted care home for the aged in New Orleans.

What was wrong with Tom Dempsey’s foot?

He was born with no toes on his right foot.

When did Tom Dempsey in the NFL?

In 1969.

What was Tom Dempsey’s NFL record?

He set the record for the longest field goal in history.