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JAMEY Rootes, the former president of the Houston Texans, has died at age 55 after a “battle with mental health issues,” his wife has confirmed.
Rootes was NFL team president for more than two decades before retiring in 2021 and has been a fixture in the Houston community for decades.
Rootes’ wife, Melissa, confirmed the news of her husband’s death.
His wife, Melissa Wildgen Rootes, confirmed the news in a Facebook post Monday night, saying the family was “heartbroken.”
“Our family is heartbroken to confirm that after a battle with mental health issues, Jamey Rootes passed away on Sunday, August 21, 2022,” the post begins.
“Jamey was a dedicated Houstonian who loved his city and touched so many lives through his professional, academic and philanthropic work.”
The family requests privacy at this time and noted that a celebration of life will be held in the future.
The post also includes the number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline for anyone thinking about suicide or experiencing a crisis.
Just days ago, it was announced that Rootes would be joining the Rice University faculty, leading its new Hutchinson Leadership Initiative in Sport Analytics.
“His knowledge of the sports industry and his vast network of contacts will be invaluable to Rice,” said the university’s Clark Haptonstall.
In addition to his work with Texans, Rootes was also an author and adjunct professor at the University of Houston.
Rootes was also president and general manager of the Columbus Crew and helped launch Major League Soccer.
After leaving the Texans, he briefly held a leadership position on the Houston Dynamo football team.
He attended Clemson University and played on its football team, winning two NCAA titles.
Rootes received his MBA from Indiana University.
Sports fans and professionals alike continue to share tributes after learning of Rootes’ passing.
The Texans issued an official statement via Twitter offering his condolences.
“We are heartbroken to learn that former Houston Texans president Jamey Rootes has passed away,” the Texans’ statement said.
“For two decades, Jamey led our business operations with an unwavering commitment to Houston and the Houston Texans.
“We are grateful for his strong leadership and his immeasurable contributions to our team.
“Our thoughts and deepest condolences go out to Jamey’s wife, Melissa, and her two children during this extremely difficult time.”
Players and fans have also shared their condolences for him.
“So sad to hear the news about Jamey Rootes. He was a great man and always positive in the building. Prayers for his family,” former Texans player Justin Reid wrote.
“It is very sad news to hear of the passing of former Texans team president Jamey Rootes. He was a very nice guy who was deeply committed to the team and charitable efforts throughout the Houston area. Our deepest condolences to his family. Rest in peace, Jamey.” NFL reporter Aaron Wilson wrote.
“My fondest memories of Jamey Rootes have nothing to do with football or the Texans. He was a good person whose love for his family shone through. I will miss him. We will all miss him, even if you never met him. His legacy and impact is so strong like anyone in the organization. RIP, my friend,” sports radio host John P Lopez wrote.