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Actor and football star dies after battle with cancer

Actor and football star dies after battle with cancer

 


OJ Simpson, the controversial football star and high-profile subject of one of the most famous murder trials of all time, in which he was acquitted of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman, is died at the age of 76.

The star family announcement that he died Wednesday following a battle with cancer on the official Simpsons X account on Thursday.

On April 10, our father, Orenthal James Simpson, succumbed to his battle with cancer. He was surrounded by his children and grandchildren, the press release said. During this time of transition, his family asks that you respect their wishes for privacy and grace.”

Simpson was professionally known for his successful sports career with the Buffalo Bills and San Francisco 49ers, as well as his acting career in projects like the Naked gun trilogy and The imposing hell. His ultimate legacy, however, was defined by his connection, or lack thereof, to the deaths of Brown and Goldman, his high-profile criminal trial being one of the most important events of the 1990s.

OJ Simpson.

Ralph Notaro/Getty


Born Orenthal James Simpson in San Francisco in 1947, the NFL star played football for City College of San Francisco during the 1965-66 season before transferring to the University of Southern California, where he played for two seasons as a running back under Coach John. McKay. Simpson led the nation in rushing yards and won the Walter Camp Award in both seasons with the Trojans, as well as the Heisman Trophy and Maxwell Award his senior year. While attending USC, he appeared in an episode of the television series Flirting and starred in the pilot for Medical Center after graduation.

The Buffalo Bills drafted Simpson with the first overall pick in the 1969 draft. After a few disappointing seasons, the running back led the NFL in rushing yards during the 1972-73 seasons, becoming the first player to pass for 2,000 yards in a single season in 1973. Simpson won the NFL Most Valuable Player Award in 1973 and led the league in rushing again in 1975 and 1976 (he missed the mark in 1974 in due to a knee injury). After an injury cut his 1977 season in half, Simpson was traded to the San Francisco 49ers, for whom he played his final two NFL seasons. He ultimately recorded 11,236 rushing yards during his NFL career, which placed him second on the all-time list when he retired.

A beloved celebrity before his legal troubles, Simpson acted sporadically while playing in the NFL. His most iconic performance came in a series of Hertz rental car commercials in 1975, in which he ran through airports while spectators chanted Go, OJ, go! He also played supporting roles in films like Naked gun trilogy, The Klansman, The imposing hell, Killer Force, Cassandra's PassageAnd Capricorn One, and hosted Saturday Night Live during his third season, in 1978. He also served as a sports commentator for several networks after retiring from the NFL.

Simpson's ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, to whom he was married from 1985 to 1992, was found stabbed to death outside her Brentwood apartment alongside her friend Ron Goldman on June 12, 1994. Simpson was charged murders when investigators found a glove filled with blood. stains on the athlete's property. He initially agreed to surrender to the Los Angeles Police Department, but instead was involved in a low-speed car chase on June 17 while evading arrest. Police pursued Simpson as he rode in a 1993 Ford Bronco driven by former teammate Al Cowlings, who said Simpson held a gun to his head during the ride.

The Simpson murder trial, which lasted 11 months in 1994-95, was one of the most high-profile events in American history. Prosecutors Marcia Clark, Christopher Darden and William Hodgman argued that Simpson's history of domestic violence logically ended with the athlete killing his ex-wife. They also presented more than 100 pieces of DNA evidence from the crime scene that allegedly linked Simpson to the murders. The defense Dream Team, which included Johnnie Cochran, Robert Shapiro, F. Lee Bailey, Robert Kardashian and Alan Dershowitz, argued that reasonable doubt existed that Simpson was responsible for the murders, stating that the prior racism and incompetent DNA collection by the LAPD had led to a compromised investigation.

The jury ultimately acquitted Simpson of the murders, and the announcement of the verdict was watched by as many as 100 million people in the United States. However, the families of Goldman and Brown filed a civil suit against Simpson following the acquittal. The Santa Monica jury found Simpson liable for the wrongful death of Goldman and the battery of Brown and Goldman, and the athlete was ordered to pay $33,500,000 in damages in 1997.

The trial had an impact not only on American society as a whole, but also on popular culture. In 2016, FX dramatized the events of the Simpson case in the first season of its television series. American crime story anthology series, The People v. OJ Simpsonfor which Cuba Gooding, Jr. earned an Emmy nomination for his portrayal of Simpson.

In 2008, Simpson was convicted of 12 counts related to an armed robbery that occurred in Las Vegas in 2007. He was sentenced to 33 years in prison and was paroled in July 2017. He was released in October 2017, then granted early release. parole in December 2021.

Local10.com in Las Vegas reported that Simpson was undergoing treatment for prostate cancer in February 2024.

He is survived by his four children Arnelle and Jason, from his first marriage to Marguerite Whitley, and Sydney and Justin, from his marriage to Nicole Brown Simpson. Simpson had a fifth child with Whitley, Aaren, who was almost 2 when she accidentally drowned in the family pool in 1979.

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