Former Houston Oiler dies after sharing he had stage 4 pancreatic cancer

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Houston Oilers hall of famer Curley Culp has died after announcing less than two weeks ago that he had been diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.

"On behalf of our family and with a broken heart, I announce the passing of my husband, Curley Culp early this morning. We respectfully ask for privacy at this time," said a tweet attributed to Culp's wife, Collette Bloom Culp, on Saturday.



The tweet added that the account is now closed.

Culp shared his diagnosis on social media on Nov. 16, asking his followers to "donate to your local cancer organizations so this dreaded disease is eradicated."



According to the Hirshberg Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research, pancreatic cancer has the highest mortality rate of all major cancers.

For all stages combined, the 5-year relative survival rate is 10%.

Symptoms of pancreatic cancer may include weight loss, abdominal discomfort, back pain and development of type 2 diabetes. The organization says some tumors may cause jaundice leading to earlier diagnosis.

The foundation adds that this type of cancer is so deadly largely because there are no detection tools to diagnose the disease in its early stages when surgical removal of the tumor is still possible.

Several celebrities and high-profile figures have passed away from the disease or complications from it, including longtime "Jeopardy!" host Alex Trebek, Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Steve Jobs, Alan Rickman, and Patrick Swayze.

Culp was a defensive lineman who helped turn the Oilers around after joining the team in 1974. He was a key member of the Oilers when Bum Phillips was coach.

Culp played 14 NFL seasons and was a six-time Pro Bowler.

He was 75.

The video above is from a previous report about Culp's diagnosis.

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