Former Charger Chuck Muncie memorialized at Rock Church today in Point Loma
Last Updated: 196 days ago
SAN DIEGO - He was one of the greatest Chargers players and has been called one of the greatest running backs ever in the NFL.
Saturday, family and friends gathered to say goodbye to Chuck Muncie.
There was a lot of laughter and tears at The Rock Church Saturday as more than 100 people gathered to grieve together by sharing memories of one of the greatest Chargers ever.
Former teammates, a coach, all spoke warmly of number 46, Chuck Muncie and Muncie's daughter Danielle Ward, who said how proud she was to be his daughter.
“You weren't Chuck Muncie to me. You weren't the famous NFL running back. You were dad. I will always cherish the time we had together,” said Wade.
Muncie began his football career playing for Cal State Berkeley then it was off to the NFL.
After playing for the New Orleans Saints for four years, he was traded to San Diego.
That was in 1980.
The next year he would run for 1,144 yards on 256 carries scoring what was then an NFL record 19 touchdowns.
But during those years of NFL stardom, Muncie was also dealing with private demons.
He became addicted to cocaine and that cut his career short.
But he went on to turn his life around and form a foundation that mentors troubled children.
“It's hard to put into words how we felt about Chuck,” said longtime Charger and San Diego broadcaster Hank Bauer.
Bauer though says there was a universal love for Chuck Muncie.
“Chuck loved the game and Chuck loved the City of San Diego and it was fun for everybody and it's tough. It's tough to see him go,” said Bauer.
Bauer told me there is a hole in his heart now that Muncie is gone.
“I'm sad because I'll never see him again. But I'm here to celebrate his life because he did not get shortchanged,” said Bauer.
It's fair to say neither did any of Muncie's many friends and fans.
Chuck Muncie died suddenly and unexpectedly earlier this month of a heart attack.
He was just 60 years old.
But the fact that he leaves behind a foundation that helps troubled kids means his legacy of doing good for others will continue to live on.
Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.