Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Greg Goodsell

10/10/2012 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Karras was best known to moviegoers as 'Mongo' in 1974's 'Blazing Saddles'

Former Detroit Lions defensive tackle Alex Karras, who went on to act in movies and television has died at the age of 77. Karras had suffered in his later years from kidney disease, heart disease, dementia and stomach cancer, according to his family.

As an actor, Alex Karras is probably best known as the burly imbecile 'Mongo' - so tough he knocks out a horse with a single blow - in Mel Brooks' 'Blazing Saddles.'

As an actor, Alex Karras is probably best known as the burly imbecile "Mongo" - so tough he knocks out a horse with a single blow - in Mel Brooks' "Blazing Saddles."

Highlights

By Greg Goodsell

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

10/10/2012 (2 years ago)

Published in Sports

Keywords: Alex Karras, Blazing Saddles, Webster, footbal star, Detroit Lions


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic online) - Hailing from Gary, Indiana, Karras was an All-American at the University of Iowa before becoming a  four-time Pro Bowl selection in the NFL. He played for the Detroit Lions from 1958 to 1970.

Karras later pursued acting. He's probably best known as the burly imbecile "Mongo" - so tough he knocks out a horse with a single blow - in Mel Brooks' "Blazing Saddles."

He then went on to star in the 1980s' sitcom "Webster" - he played George Papadapolis, the guardian of the newly orphaned Webster, played by actor Emmanuel Lewis.

"Karras had always dreamed of being an actor," and got a boost when Lucille Ball "took him under her wing and allowed him to train in small parts."

Karras co-wrote two autobiographies entitled "Even Big Guys Cry" and "Alex Karras by Alex Karras."

"His love of nature and most especially of the ocean, where he spent many happy days on his fishing boat, led him to support numerous organizations committed to protecting our environment for future generations," his family said.

Last April, Karras joined hundreds of former NFL players suing the league over concussion-related injuries. Karras served as lead plaintiff for what was then the 12th concussion-related complaint filed against the NFL by the Locks Law Firm in Philadelphia.

Karras "sustained repetitive traumatic impacts to his head and/or concussions on multiple occasions" during his NFL career, and "suffers from various neurological conditions and symptoms related to the multiple head traumas," the lawsuit said.

His wife and "Webster" co-star Susan Clark had revealed at that time that Karras suffered from dementia.

The more than 2,000 NFL players who are suing the league claim the NFL misled players concerning the risks associated with concussions. The NFL has repeatedly said that player safety is a priority and that any allegation that the NFL intentionally sought to mislead players has no merit.

Memorial services are being planned and will be announced shortly.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2014
Christmas, hope for humanity:
That the birth of the Redeemer may bring peace and hope to all people of good will.
Parents: That parents may be true evangelizers, passing on to their children the precious gift of faith.



Comments


More Sports

Following devestating loss to Seattle, 49ers look to replace Harbaugh in trade Watch

Image of Jim Harbaugh is well known for his excitability on the field, though with his record with the 49ers prior to this season it could be excused because of his successes.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Following their fifth regular-season loss to the Seattle Seahawks on November 27, a rumor began circulating that the San Francisco 49ers were getting ready to replace their fiery and animated head coach, Jim Harbaugh. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ESPN's Adam ... continue reading


PILLGATE: Federal agents begin probe into NFL drug abuse Watch

Image of Several NFL teams were inspected by federal agents following their Sunday games as part of a probe into allegations that the NFL condones and permits the illegal use of medication.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Federal agents launched a surprise drug inspection of the NFL's medical staffs on November 16, part of a larger ongoing investigation into accusations that the league is allowing prescription drug abuse. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - During the inspection, ... continue reading


Giants beat Royals in Game 7 for eighth championship title Watch

Image of The Giants just won their eight World Series with a 3-2 Game 7 win over the Kansas City Royals.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The San Francisco Giants won their eight World Series-the third since 2009-brushing aside incredible odds and a sea of 40,000 Royals fans. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Giants defeated Kansas City 3-2 in Game 7, and with that victory they've become the ... continue reading


Where will it end? Manning breaks touchdown pass record against 49ers Watch

Image of Peyton Manning broke the NFL's record for career touchdown passes, with 509, during the October 19 game against the 49ers.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Payton Manning, the quarterback for the Denver Broncos, has broken the NFL's all-time touchdown record during his October 19 game against the San Francisco 49ers. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Manning needed three touchdowns to break the record, and had ... continue reading


Ishikawa sends the Giants to the World Series after a three-run homer Watch

Image of Travis Ishikawa sealed the win over the Cardinals with a three-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The San Francisco Giants are heading to the World Series to battle the Kansas City Royals after a 6-3 win over the St. Louis Cardinals during game 5 of the series on October 16. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Travis Ishikawa helped sink the win with a ... continue reading


After Orioles bumb Yankees from playoffs, Derek Jeter gets set to retire Watch

Image of New York Yankee Derek Jeter, who is retiring from the MLB after this season, his 20th.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The New York Yankees have been eliminated from the playoffs after letting a three-run lead over the Baltimore Orioles slip away, ending the game with a 9-5 loss. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "It's tough. It's a rough feeling," said Yankee captain Derek ... continue reading


Sterling is out and Ballmer is in! Watch

Image of Steve Ballmer, former Microsoft CEO and now owner of the Los Angeles Clippers franchise.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Steve Ballmer, the former CEO of Microsoft became the new owner of the NBA's Los Angeles Clippers after his purchase of the team was confirmed on August 12. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - This sale marks the end of the co-ownership of the team by billionaire ... continue reading


It's the CATHOLIC WORLD CUP: Who are you praying for? Team Benedict or Team Francis?

Image of Pope Emeritus Benedict and Pope Francis are praying. Who are you praying for? Team Benedict or Team Francis?

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Sunday's World Cup match will be absolutely historic for Catholics around the world and especially in the Vatican. For the first time in history two living pontiffs, Emeritus Benedict and Francis, will watch teams from their respective homelands meet for the World Cup ... continue reading


Germany destroys Brazil in 7-1 match Watch

Image of Germany shattered an almost forty year run of Brazil remaining undefeated at home after their July 8 match.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Brazil's bid to win a record sixth World Cup ended, after the host country suffered a 7-1 loss to Germany in the soccer semifinal. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Germany won the most lopsided World Cup semifinal game in history, which was also the worst defeat ... continue reading


Americans blow up twitter after U.S. World Cup game Watch

Image of Dempsey made the first goal of the game, scoring just 32 seconds into the match.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Soccer has never enjoyed the cult-like popularity in the United States that it enjoys in more traditional hot spots like Europe, South America and Africa, but the 2014 Brazil world cup may have changed all that, at least according to activity on twitter following ... continue reading


All Sports News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 18th, 2014 Image

St. Rufus
December 18: Rufus and Zosimus were citizens of Antioch (or perhaps Philippi) ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter