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‘I am at peace’: Florida State’s Bobby Bowden diagnosed with terminal medical condition

  • July 21, 2021

Bobby Bowden’s faith and spirit remain strong. 

However, his weakened body is failing him.

Florida State’s legendary football coach — who turns 92 in November — wife Ann and their family announced Wednesday that Bowden has been diagnosed with a terminal medical condition. 

“I’ve always tried to serve God’s purpose for my life, on and off the field, and I am prepared for what is to come,” Bowden said in a statement shared with the Tallahassee Democrat. “My wife Ann and our family have been life’s greatest blessing.

“I am at peace.”

The Bowden family has also asked for privacy as Bowden deals with his health. 

Bowden’s health has deteriorated after he tested positive for COVID-19 in October 2020.

Hospitalized in late June for five days, Bowden has struggled to regain his strength. He has been under supervised care and is resting comfortably at his Killearn Estates home. 

“I feel fine but I can’t do much,” Bowden told the Democrat on Monday, July 5. 

Hired from West Virginia in 1976, Bowden posted a 316-97-4 record with two national titles (1993 and 1999) in 34 years at Florida State. He had one losing season — 5-6 during his first year at the school — and was forced into retirement following a 7-6 record in 2009.

LINKS TO BOWDEN STORIES

  • Family, friends look back on Bobby Bowden’s 91st birthday
  • Christmas holidays bring back fond memories to Bobby Ann Bowden
  • ‘Give and take’: Bobby Ann Bowden share keys to their marriage

last public appearance on stage in early June as a guest speaker at the Send Luncheon, hosted by the North American Mission Board (NAMB), in Nashville.

“I really enjoyed it — it felt like it was the first time I was out of this house in months,” Bowden told the Tallahassee Democrat following the one-day engagement. 

The unannounced appearance came as Mark Richt, a former assistant under Bowden at Florida State, shared with the attendees how his former boss led him to the Lord.

Before Richt finished his testimony, Bowden was introduced as lights came up on a darkened corner of the stage.

Reach Jim Henry at jjhenry@tallahassee.com.

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