(Photo by Niall Carson - Pa Images/Getty Images)
The Steelers announced the passing of Patricia Rooney on Saturday night. She was 88. Mrs. Rooney was the dearly loved wife of the late Steelers chairman and Ambassador Daniel M. Rooney, who passed away on April 13, 2017. They were married for 65 years up until Mr. Rooney's passing.
"My family and I are mourning the passing of my mother, Patricia," Steelers President Art Rooney II said in a statement released by the team on Saturday night. "She helped raise nine children while supporting my father's career with the Steelers and his time as Ambassador to Ireland. It is a sad day for our family.
"My mother meant so much to not only all of us in the family, but she gave so much of her time and energy helping those in need in the Pittsburgh community. She will leave a lasting impression on so many people and organizations in our area, especially the Salvation Army and many organizations in the North Side of Pittsburgh, where my parents called home."
Mrs. Rooney is survived by six children, 18 grandchildren and six great grandchildren.
"We will celebrate her life and the memories we have of her during this challenging time for our family. We appreciate everyone with your thoughts and prayers," Art Rooney II said.
Mrs. Rooney was born on the North Side and graduated from the University of Pittsburgh. Due to COVID precautions, funeral arrangements are private, the Steelers announced. A memorial Mass will be scheduled at a later date. Memorial contributions may be made to the Salvation Army or the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, or the charity of the donor's choice.
In 2019, Mrs. Rooney was featured in an NFL Films documentary called "A Lifetime of Sundays," which profiled the matriarchs of four American football families -- Rooney, Virginia Halas McCaskey of the Bears, Martha Ford of the Lions and Norma Hunt of the Chiefs.
The film was done by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell’s wife, Jane.
“Patricia represented the Rooney family and Steelers with extraordinary grace, dignity and integrity,” the Goodells said in a statement. “Patricia was passionately devoted to her family, the wonderful family she and Dan raised and adored, the Pittsburgh community and the Steelers organization. She was also one of the most passionate football fans you could ever meet and very proud of the number of female fans around the world.
“We will greatly miss her as will many people whose lives she touched throughout her community, and the NFL.”