Patriots

Gino Cappelletti, longtime Patriots player and broadcaster, dead at 89

"My heart aches after learning of Gino Cappelletti’s passing this morning," Robert Kraft wrote in a statement.

Gino Cappelletti
Legendary Patriots player, broadcaster Gino Cappelletti died Thursday morning at 89. Matthew J. Lee/Globe staff

Legendary Patriots player and broadcaster Gino Cappelletti is dead at 89, the team announced.

Cappelletti passed away Thursday morning with his family, per the team.

Cappelletti was a wide receiver and placekicker for the original Boston Patriots team in 1960. He was inducted into the Patriots Hall of Fame in 1992.

“My heart aches after learning of Gino Cappelletti’s passing this morning,” Robert Kraft wrote in a statement released by the team. “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.”

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Cappelletti was the AFL’s MVP in 1964 and was one of three players who played every game during the AFL’s 10-year run, per the Patriots. He ranks third in points scored in Patriots history at 1,130 and holds the team record for most points in a game with 28. Cappelletti was named an AFL All-Star five times.

After his playing career, Cappelletti joined the Patriots’ broadcast team from 1972-78, and then rejoined the booth from 1988-2011.

“I will always believe he deserves to be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame,” Kraft wrote in his statement. “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.”

Per the Patriots, funeral arrangements have not yet been made but will be shared when they are finalized.

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