Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford is preparing for the 2020 season, but he is dealing with some heartache. He and his wife, Kelly Stafford, recently had to say goodbye to a beloved member of the family. They had to put down one of their dogs, Champ.
Kelly announced the news with an emotional post on Instagram. She included multiple photos of the Stafford family with their beloved dog, ranging from early in the quarterback's career to the later days. Over the years, the family's companion served as a chair for Kelly's children, but he also used Stafford for the same purpose. Champ proved to be a loving and loyal member of the family throughout his life, and Kelly wanted to highlight this with her post on social media.
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"Today was a very tough day. We had to put our sweet boy to sleep," Kelly wrote on Instagram. "It was very unexpected and happened so fast. My heart hurts, I miss him so much already. I wish I had more time with you champ. I wish I could have been better the last four years, but I know you are in a better place, pooping wherever you want. I love you so much. Rest In Peace Champ. You really were the best dog."
When Kelly shared the sad story, several fans weighed in and expressed their condolences. Strangers simply said that they understand the pain and hoped that the Stafford family would heal. Those that spent time with Champ, on the other hand, reminisced about some moments.
"Nooo! RIP Champ, ill miss you standing next to the stove waiting for me to drop food," private chef Chris Donaldson commented. As someone that created meals for high-profile athletes, Donaldson had interactions with the Stafford family and Champ.
The Stafford family has dealt with several emotional moments in recent weeks. They said goodbye to Champ but also faced a health scare due to COVID-19. The Detroit Lions placed Stafford on the Reserve/COVID-19 list after he tested positive, which nearly sidelined him for a significant portion of the time.
Days later, however, the Lions removed Stafford from the list. The team revealed that the previous positive test was a "false positive" and said that he had tested negative multiple times. Additionally, Kelly and the children all tested negative and sparked relief among fans.