Carl Paganelli Sr., who has been referred to as the godfather of Grand Rapids area officials, has passed away.The West Michigan Officials Association, an organization that Mr. Paganelli served for nearly 60 years, made the announcement on Twitter today, stating that he died in Florida Tuesday morning, May 20, 2019. Mr. Paganelli was 82 years old. Mr. Paganelli, a longtime Wyoming resident and a member of the Grand Rapids Sports Hall of Fame, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin Lymphoma in December of 2016. He had beaten the disease 28 years earlier. Mr. Paganelli officiated in the United States Football League, the World Football League, Arena Football League and small colleges. He served as head of officials for the Mid-American Conference, too.Sons Carl Paganelli Jr., Perry Paganelli and Dino Paganelli have all gone on to officiate in the National Football League. Perry and Carl Jr. officiated Super Bowl XLI together in 2007 in Miami where Indianapolis beat Chicago. Dino officiated Super Bowl XLVII between San Francisco and Baltimore in New Orleans. “He is the strength of our entire family,” Dino Paganelli said when his father was honored by the WMOA with the Lifetime Achievement Award at Thousand Oaks Golf Club in 2017. “He’s a fantastic person and he’s my father. He can be described having humility, dedication, loyalty and a commitment to excellence.”Mr. Paganelli was inducted into the Grand Rapids Sports Hall of Fame in 2008. His three sons joined him in 2018.

Source link