by: Rachel Stockman Updated:DECATUR, Ga. —
The wife of a former NFL player says the concussions her husband suffered from the game robbed her of more than 20 years of marriage.
Decatur native Larry Morris was a linebacker for the Rams and the Falcons, but spent most of his career with the Chicago Bears, becoming MVP during the 1963 NFL Championship Game. His wife, Kay Morris,
said he suffered several concussions throughout his career.
"If they could count how many fingers you are holding up, you could go back
in (the game)," Kay Morris told Channel 2's Rachel Stockman.
On Wednesday, Kay Morris filed a lawsuit against the National Football League, claiming that the league was aware of the dangers of concussions, but did not do enough to protect the players from the long-term consequences.
Morris is one of thousands of family members and players, part of a large
class-action lawsuit, claiming negligence by NFL.
"He loved the game, but he had no idea he was exchanging 20 years of quality life for the game," Kay Morris said.
Morris said her husband began exhibiting symptoms of memory loss in his 40s. By 52, doctors diagnosed him with dementia, and she
said things got progressively worse.
"He and I used to tell each other 'I love you' every time we talked on the phone, every time we said good night. I missed that when that stopped. It was a big adjustment," Morris said.
In December, Morris died from complications due to
"The children pulled my bed up next to him, and I got to snuggle up with him and that felt good," Morris said. "We let him know that it was all
right, that he had struggled a long time."
Morris hopes her
lawsuit will prompt the NFL to take further action to protect players from head injuries.
"I don't know what they can do to change the game but I would think something could be done to make it less brutal," said Morris.
Channel 2 News tried to get a response from the NFL concerning
Morris's lawsuit, but have no heard back from the organization's spokesperson. The organization has previously told Channel 2 that players' safety has always been their top priority and they deny allegations in the lawsuits.