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Bills' extended family mourns fallen friend

Statements from former Bills players and personnel on the death of Kent Hull:

Ralph Wilson: "I am so very saddened to hear of the passing of Kent Hull. Kent was a terrific player for us, who was often overshadowed by some of the bigger names we had in our Super Bowl years. But Kent was one of the key components of our team and of our high-powered offenses in the '90s that enjoyed so much success.

"But he was so much more than just a good player on a good team. He was a great leader on and off the field and respected by everyone who knew him. He was a true gentleman who was as nice as anyone you'd ever want to meet and as tough as any player I've ever known. If you were lucky enough to have Kent as a friend, you had a cherished friend for life. This is a sad day for me and all of us in the Bills organization as well as all of our fans. I will miss Kent very much, but will always remember fondly the great man and great player that he was. I want to offer my deepest sympathies to his wife, Kay, and his entire family in this most difficult time."

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Jim Kelly: Words fall short when the pain runs so deep. I'm finding it hard to describe what this loss means to me and my family. Kent Hull was my best friend. A man of great courage, faith and character. He will be missed and never forgotten. My family and I will continue to pray for Kent's wife, Kay, and his two children, Drew and Ellen, as they grieve the loss of this great man.

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Bruce Smith: "I know he had some health problems but this is certainly unexpected. You never can really prepare for losing a family member. He was just a tremendous person, an incredible human being, and you couldn't ask for a better teammate. It's a sad day."

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Smith on Hull's leadership: "It's not necessarily what he said, it's the way he carried himself and the way he interacted with all of his teammates, not just the star players, but the backups and practice squad players. He treated everyone the same, it's a reason he was so admired and respected."

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Steve Tasker: "Darryl was the guy who would threaten to kick guys' [butts]. He'd fight you. Kent would not back away in telling you why what you were doing was wrong. He articulated it in such a way he'd point out in a gentlemanly, friendly, buddy type of manner why you were screwing up."

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Former Bills trainer Ed Abramoski: "He was the guy that made the K-Gun go with Kelly. On Friday after practice the offensive linemen would order a pizza and they'd sit in the locker room and go over what they were going to do. Kent was the glue that held those guys together."

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Special teams coach Bruce DeHaven: "I've always told people with all the stars that we had, the backbone of the team I thought, was Darryl Talley and Kent Hull. They certainly weren't underrated because they were good players in their own right but maybe didn't have the star power like some of the other players we had. They were the real leaders of that team."

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Former Bills General Manager Bill Polian: "His physical toughness, work ethic, intelligence, character and sense of humor made him an undisputed leader on a team filled with Hall of Famers and stars. He was a fine man, a good friend and a true professional."

-- Compiled by Mark Gaughan