Bill Leavy, a retired police officer and firefighter in San Jose and a longtime NFL referee, has passed away. He was 76.
Leavy worked as an NFL official from 1995 to 2015, then became a referee supervisor for the officiating department and a treasured mentor for officials around the country. He received the league’s 2019 Art McNally Award reflecting professionalism, leadership, and sportsmanship.
Leavy died Tuesday, three days after his birthday, the NFL confirmed on Wednesday.
“We are saddened to learn of the passing of Bill Leavy, a longtime NFL referee and a current member of the league’s officiating staff,” NFL Senior Vice President of Officiating Walt Anderson said in a statement. “Bill was an outstanding official and an even better man. Always kind and thoughtful, Bill was instrumental in mentoring countless young officials throughout his career. His recognition as an Art McNally Award winner highlights that selfless dedication to officiating. His integrity earned him respect at every step of his football journey and the entire officiating community mourns his loss.”
"Bill was my Supervisor in the WAC and MWC from 1998-2003 and we had a common bond of being Police Officers," Honig's CEO Greg Wilson said in a statement. "Subsequently I worked with Bill in the NFL, where he eventually became my Supervisor. I give Bill a lot of credit in my progression as a young college football official into the NFL. If it were not for Bill, I would not have been as successful as I am in football officiating, business, and as a Police Officer. I am forever grateful to him."
To read more about Bill's distinguished career, please click here https://www.foxnews.com/sports/longtime-nfl-referee-bill-leavy-dead-76-report