Former Broncos defensive end Harald Hasselbach dies

 November 25, 2023

Harald Hasselbach, who played defense for the Denver Broncos in the 1990s and helped the team win two consecutive Super Bowls, has died. He was 56. 

The six-foot-six defensive end succumbed to a rare form of cancer, metastatic mucinous adenocarcinoma.

Broncos' Hasselbach dies

His family said he died peacefully following a six-month battle.

"He's had an overwhelming amount of support over the last week, including past teammates, coaches, and family that've flown in from around the world," the family said. "We learned he had the illness less than 6 months ago and he fought as hard any human possibly could, with incredible strength."

Hasselbach was coaching the defensive line at Regis Jesuit High School in Aurora, Colorado.

The Broncos commented on the tragic news.

"We are deeply saddened by the passing of Harald Hasselbach (1994-00), a DE on our back-to-back Super Bowl teams who courageously fought a recent cancer diagnosis," the team wrote. "Our hearts go out to Harold’s wife, Aundrea, his four children & many loved ones."

Two-time Super Bowl winner

The Broncos have won three Super Bowls, most recently in 2015. Hasselbach was a part of the first two Super Bowl wins in 1998 and 1999.

He is among a handful of football players to win a Super Bowl and Canada's equivalent, the Grey Cup.

During his seven seasons with the Broncos, Hasselbach played every regular season and postseason game and started all three games during the 1999 playoff. He had 154 tackles, 17.5 sacks and four forced fumbles.

He also played Canadian football with the Calgary Stampeders from 1990 to 1993.

Born in the Netherlands to a Dutch father and a Surinamese mother, Hasselbach attended high school outside of Vancouver, Canada. He played college football at the University of Washington before joining the Canadian Football League (CFL).

“Harald was a great Canadian and a championship-caliber player for the Stampeders at a significant time in the franchise’s history,” Stampeders president John Hufnagel said in a statement.

He leaves behind his wife, Aundrea; his four children, Ashlee, Terran, Aven, and Kian; and four grandchildren.

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