Mother Of Giants Coach Dies

Dorothy Fassel, the mother of New York Giants coach Jim Fassel, has died after a lengthy illness. She was 76.

She died in Phoenix on Wednesday night, Fassel said.

"My mom was a real fighter," Fassel said in a statement released by the Giants Thursday morning. "When she passed away, it was peaceful."

Dorothy Fassel had been suffering a number of medical problems since the summer. At one point, she was undergoing dialysis treatments at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz. She had been on a ventilator after collapsing in the hospital.

Giants spokesman Peter John-Baptiste said Fassel will coach his team this weekend at Giants Stadium against Arizona.

Fassel said he would probably fly out to Arizona after Sunday's game.

"I think that is what I will do. I don't know right now. I will talk it over with my family.

"I told the guys today, my mother passed last night. My focus may not be there today you guys just hang in there."

John-Baptiste said funeral arrangements are pending but are not expected to take place until next week.

Recently, Fassel visited his mother to say goodbye. He missed the Giants' preseason opener against Minnesota on Aug. 13 to be with his mother. But she later urged him to work with his team.

Beside her son, Dorothy Fassel is survived by two daughters, Linda and Debbie, ten grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

"It's just sad, especially at a time like this, Thanksgiving," said Pro Bowl defensive lineman Michael Strahan. "We all know she raised a good son. He's handled it very well. I only hope when I'm in the same situation I can handle it the way he did."

Giants halfback Tiki Barber said all the players have known it's been a tough time for their coach.

"It really shows us what we have to be thankful for," Barber said. "This puts life in perspective and lets us see Jim not only as a coach, but also as a person. Our sentiments and prayers go out to him."

Beside her son, Dorothy Fassel is survived by two daughters, Linda and Debbie, 10 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Fassel's father, Bud, died in a car accident in the early 1990s.

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