With actor Billy Dee Williams playing Sayers and James being as Piccolo, the made-for-TV movie was later released in theaters.
Sayers stayed by Piccolo’s side as disease took its toll, donated blood and provided support. Just days before Piccolo died at the age of 26, Sayers was awarded the George S Hals Award for Courage and said, “You flatter me by giving me this award, but I can tell you here and now that I have accepted it for Brian Piccolo … I love Brian Piccolo and I would love him all. Also… Tonight, when you hit your knees, ask God to love Him.
After his playing days, Sayers worked as a sports director at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale and founded several technology and consulting firms.
Sayers made the 130-mile trip from his home in Indiana to the opening ceremony of the Bears’ celebration of the 100th season in June 2019, where he received a standing ovation.
Hall of Fame player Mike Singletary said this weekend, “He’s an amazing person who was so beautiful, talented and talented as a player, and later in life that happens to you is difficult for everyone.”
Singletary concluded, “It is difficult for his team-mates, former team-mates. It is difficult for the league. As a player, it makes you back off a little and thank God every day for your health and blessings.”