Freddie Joe Steinmark, starting Safety for the University of Texas Longhorns 1969 National Champion football team, led a life that is an inspirational symbol of faith, courage, heart, and perseverance.
Steinmark is well-known for his legendary performance in his last game, when the Texas Longhorns, ranked No. 1, played the Arkansas Razorbacks, ranked No. 2, a classic battle of longtime rivals that sports writers have called ‘The Game of the Century’.
After the magical Texas 15-14 Victory, a cancerous tumor was discovered in Freddie’s left thighbone, resulting in amputation of his leg. Yet, 20 days later, Steinmark valiantly stood on the sideline, on crutches, to support the Longhorns in their victory over Notre Dame in that year’s National Championship Cotton Bowl game.
Freddie Joe was the oldest son of the Steinmark family. He was a man of great faith, and in the year and half after his surgery, focused on his studies, advancing his life and spending time with his family. During the 1970/1971 academic year, his senior year, Freddie coached freshman football at UT, was a spokesperson for the American Cancer Society, and gave motivational speeches across the country.
On Sunday, June 6, 1971, in the evening, unable to battle cancer any longer, Freddie Joe Steinmark passed away in Houston, Texas and was laid to rest a few days later in his home town of Denver, Colorado.