KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Loren “Sam” Lickteig led a fulfilling life. He had a loving wife and family, a stint in the Air Force, a career as a real estate broker and a spell on the city council. But in passing, he’s now become a part of Kansas City Chiefs lore.
“Oh, he would’ve loved it,” Lickteig’s son, Jake, told FOXSportsKansasCity.com when asked about his dad, whose obituary became headline news across the nation. “He would’ve laughed. He would’ve gotten a huge kick out of it.”
The elder Lickteig, a longtime fan of the Chiefs, died Nov. 14 after complications from multiple sclerosis, a disease the 81 year old had battled with over the past three decades. In a tribute to their father’s sense of humor, Sam’s oldest daughter, Diana, decided to put a little twist into the opening paragraph of his obituary.
“Loren G. “Sam” Lickteig passed away on Nov. 14, 2012 of complications from MS,” read the piece that ran in Sunday’s editions of the Kansas City Star, “and heartbreaking disappointment caused by the Kansas City Chiefs football team.”
No, technically, the Chiefs didn’t kill the man. But with a 1-9 record and riding a seven-game losing streak, they sure as heck didn’t help.
“He loved to hate the Chiefs,” Jake explained. “It was a bad relationship. He loved watching them, he was always disappointed, but he always came back for more.”
Lickteig never bought season tickets, but was “an armchair Chiefs fan,” Jake said, watching every week from his home in Belton, Mo.
“There were times my mom had to help him out of his recliner,” the younger Lickteig recalled. “He jumped up and the back of the recliner tipped over and he was stuck backward, with his feet kicked up in the air, with my mom trying desperately to pull him back down.”
Sam even had a color-coordinated rotation of Chiefs-related t-shirts to wear, based on the team’s performance that particular week: Red for a probable win, yellow for questionable, and black for no-chance-in-Hades.
Considering the Chiefs are 22-36 since general manager Scott Pioli arrived on the scene in 2009, the black one had gotten an awful lot of mileage as of late.
“It really is faded,” Jake said. “He wore it the most.”
Sam’s funeral is slated for 11 a.m. central on Tuesday. The family asks for memorial contributions to be made to the MS Society.