How did Mark Eaton die? Former NBA All-Star dead at 64, fans say 'lost a legend'

Utah Jazz stated, 'We are heartbroken by the passing of Utah Jazz legend Mark Eaton'

                            How did Mark Eaton die? Former NBA All-Star dead at 64, fans say 'lost a legend'
Former Utah Jazz basketball player Mark Eaton host the Xbox One Sports Star Challenge event at City Creek Center on November 23, 2013 in Salt Lake City, Utah (Photo by Fred Hayes/Getty Images for Microsoft)

Mark Eaton, a two-time NBA defensive player of the year who played his entire career with the Utah Jazz, died at 64. Eaton reportedly left for a bike ride in Summit County around 8 pm on Friday and never returned.

At 8.26 pm, a person reported finding an unconscious man on the road in the Silver Creek Estates neighborhood, according to Summit County Sheriff's Office officials. Deputy sheriffs and emergency medical personnel were dispatched to the scene. Eaton was taken to the hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries.


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Mark Eaton #53, Center for the Utah Jazz during the NBA Pacific Division basketball game on 9th January 1991 at the Great Western Forum arena in Inglewood, Los Angeles, California, United States. The Lakers won the game 108 - 85. (Photo by Mike Powell/Allsport/Getty Images)

Eaton appeared to have crashed his bike, according to officials, but the exact cause of the crash is unknown. No foul play was suspected, and there was no evidence of a vehicle being involved, they said. In a statement, Utah Jazz said, "We are heartbroken by the passing of Utah Jazz legend Mark Eaton. Our thoughts are with his family as we all mourn the loss of a great man, mentor, athlete and staple of the community."

NBA chimed in, saying, "The NBA mourns the passing of Mark Eaton, a Utah Jazz legend and former president of the Retired Players Association. Mark was an All-Star, two-time Defensive Player of the Year and beloved member of our league. We send our heartfelt condolences to his family and many friends." "The basketball community has lost a Legend. Our hearts are with the family, friends and fans of Mark Eaton," wrote NBA Alumni on their Twitter page.




NBA player Vemon Maxwell took to Twitter to write: "Sorry to hear about Jazz legend Mark Eaton. He was one helluva shot blocker. RIP big guy." Another player Joe Ingles added: "Devastated to hear the passing of Mark Eaton, one of the nicest guys around. Thoughts are with Teri & the rest of his family Disappointed face."

"I can't believe Mark Eaton passed away. I loved that guy. There wasn't a nicer person on this planet. Whenever I asked him a question he'd GIVE me everything he had and even things I didn't ask for. Like the big fella was just real. #TakeNote," said Stephen Howard.




"Mark Eaton was, truly, a gentle giant. One of the nicest guys ever, as well as a tough and physical center for those great Jazz teams. Had one of the best meals of my life at his restaurant in SLC. He also was a huge advocate for retired players. RIP & condolences to his family," said a Twitter user.


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