Sounders part-owner Paul Allen dies at 65

Getty Images

Microsoft co-founder, Seattle Seahawks owner, Portland Trail Blazers owner, and Seattle Sounders part-owner Paul Allen has died at age 65 due to complications from non-Hodgkins lymphoma, his family confirmed in a statement on Monday.

Allen was first diagnosed with Hodgkins lymphoma in 1983, causing him to depart Microsoft. He was then diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma in 2009 and successfully treated the disease. Last month, Allen announced the cancer had returned.

In 2009, Allen became a minority investor in the Seattle Sounders, an expansion club at the time, via his company Vulcan Sports & Entertainment. That year, the Sounders set attendance and ticket sales records in the league, and they won the U.S. Open Cup in their first year of existence. Before officially entering into the soccer world with the Sounders, Allen was rumored to be interested in purchasing English club Southampton in 2007, with the club in the Championship at the time.

Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei called Allen’s death “a huge loss” on Twitter.

“My brother was a remarkable individual on every level,” said Allen’s sister Jody in the family statement. “While most knew Paul Allen as a technologist and philanthropist, for us he was a much-loved brother and uncle, and an exceptional friend.”

Allen’s first foray into sports ownership was with the Trail Blazers in 1988, and moved to acquire the Seattle Seahawks in 1998.

He was listed as the 44th wealthiest person in the world by Forbes in its 2018 list of billionaires, with an estimated net worth of nearly $20 billion. “For all the demands on his schedule, there was always time for family and friends,” Jody said in the statement.