WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) released the following statement on the passing of legendary Minnesota Vikings head coach and NFL Hall of Famer, Bud Grant.

“While I am saddened by the loss of our dear coach Bud Grant, we must also celebrate his long and storied career. Even at age 88, Bud took to the football field in a short-sleeved polo shirt in subzero temperatures for the coin toss in the 2016 Vikings/Seahawks playoff game. A hall-of-fame NFL coach, Gopher player, and Minneapolis Laker, Bud gave us so many Minnesota memories. 

My dad and Bud were friends to the end of my dad’s life. I grew up knowing everything about the Vikings, and no name loomed larger in my house than “Bud Grant.” I remember answering the phone as a young kid to silence on the other line, save for maybe the grunted word “Jim.” That meant it was Bud calling my dad back for the post-game story, regardless of the outcome. The first few times it happened I would earnestly explain that my name wasn’t “Jim,” but after a while I got the drill, and I would just run to get my dad. 

Bud gave so much to his players, but he gave even more to the fans. Those Bud Grant years were an exhilarating time in Minnesota—158 victories and four Super Bowl appearances—but through it all Bud remained steady and stoic, win or lose. 

Bud was a beloved coach, a dedicated outdoorsman, and in his later years I loved working with him on conservation issues. But above all, Bud was devoted to his family. Today, my heart is with all those who knew and loved Bud.”