Gayle Benson issues statement thanking fans, city

Gayle Benson issues statement thanking fans, city

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Tom Benson's widow, Gayle Benson, thanked the fans and city for their "unwavering devotion" to the Saints and Pelicans franchises Friday, one day after her husband died from complications related to the flu.

In an statement on the Saints' website, Gayle Benson said she is wholly committed to making Tom Benson's hopes of more championships a reality.

The statement reads:

"While we are heartbroken by the loss of my husband, we are also tremendously grateful for the overwhelming love and prayers we continue to receive. Tom Benson's love for his teams was rooted in his love for the fans. There was nothing he enjoyed more than greeting fans on game days, driving around training camp practices to shake hands or seeing so many loyal fans welcoming the team back from a road trip - win or lose. He felt a special connection to our incredible fan base because he truly felt like a fan himself - a hardworking, passionate New Orleanian who loved everything about his city. Following the Super Bowl victory, his first order of business was figuring out how he could share the Lombardi Trophy with as many of you as he could. He vowed that our trophy would be the most traveled, touched and photographed in the history of the NFL and ordered that a tour of the Gulf South be scheduled so that as many fans as possible could have their turn with it.

Mrs. Benson now owns the Pelicans and the Saints.

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