Steelers LB, 2-Time Super Bowl Champ Marvin Kellum Dies at 70
Former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker and two-time Super Bowl champion Marvin Kellum, has died at the age of 70, according to WIBW-TV in Kansas. Officials with Historic Lecompton announced on Sunday, Feb. 5, that the Lecompton, Kansas native died on Saturday in Pittsburgh.
Kellum was recently diagnosed with digestive cancer and multiple myeloma cancer, according to a GoFundMe fundraiser set up for him in November.
Kellum grew up on a farm in Kansas and went to Lecompton High School, where he played eight-man football. He went on to play collegiately at Wichita State before signing with the Steelers as an undrafted free agent in 1974. Kellum won a Super Bowl title with the Steelers in his first two seasons as a reserve linebacker and special teamer. Kellum made a crucial fumble recovery on the opening kickoff of the second half in Super Bowl IX against the Minnesota Vikings. Four plays later, the Steelers scored the game’s first touchdown, which gave them a 9-0 lead. The Steelers ultimately defeated Minnesota, 16-6.
RIP Marv Kellum
The Steelers LB & special teamer made a crucial play to start the 2nd half of SBIX.
4 plays later the Steelers scored the game’s first TD which gave them a 9-point lead. pic.twitter.com/3UqHMj4QdH
— Steel City Star (@steelcitystar) February 5, 2023
Kellum signed with the Cardinals in 1977 and played only one season in St. Louis before calling it a career. After his playing career Kellum was a long-time employee of MBM, where he worked for 20 years.
According to the Historic Lecompton, Kellum was modest about his success and often recalled his days at Lecompton High School. During the Sunflower State’s first year of high school playoffs, officials indicated that Lecompton lost to Lucas in the semifinals and Kellum took the blame as he was sick and “let the team down.” Kellum left much of his memorabilia in a special display at the Territorial Capital Museum, 640 E. Woodson, located in his hometown. He is survived by his wife, Sandy, two sons, four grandchildren and his two brothers who remain in Lecompton, Wayne and Kenny, as well as his sister, Karen.
Kellum is the third former Steelers player from the 1970s to pass away in the last few months. Hall of Fame running back Franco Harris died on Dec. 21 at the age of 72, while Sidney Thornton died on Jan. 28 at the age of 68.