‘We Can’t Believe He Is Gone’

By Mark Joyella 

The family of longtime ESPN host John Saunders has released a statement on the sportscaster’s sudden death at 61.

“This tragic news brings us unspeakable sorrow,” Saunders’ family said. “John was the patriarch of our family, and we can’t believe he is gone. We are sincerely touched by the outpouring of support and sadness, which is a reflection of the character and integrity that defined him.”

ESPN announced early Wednesday that Saunders, who had been at the network for nearly 30 years, had died. According to the family’s statement, the death was unexpected and an exact cause has not been determined. “While we don’t yet have all the specifics, John wasn’t feeling well physically in recent days and sadly, he was unresponsive earlier this morning,” the family said. “We appreciate all of the thoughts and prayers for our cherished father, husband, brother and uncle.”