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May 11
2021

Former Chicago Bears player Steve McMichael reveals he is battling ALS

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McMichael, a key member of the Bears' Super Bowl XX team, said he was diagnosed in January.

Former Chicago Bears defensive lineman Steve McMichael revealed he's been diagnosed with ALS on Friday, in interviews with several Chicago media outlets.  

McMichael, a key member of the Bears' Super Bowl XX team, said he was diagnosed in January with 36-month onset ALS – also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease – the progressive nervous system disease that disrupts the brain's ability to harmonize with muscles.

McMichael is now using a wheelchair, having lost the use of his arms and hands. His wife, Misty, has been his caretaker. 

“I’m not going to be out in the public any more…you’re not going to see me out doing appearances, hell I can’t even sign my name any more, and everybody’s going to be speculating ‘Where’s McMichael, what’s wrong with him?” McMichael told WGN News. “I’m here to tell everyone I’ve been diagnosed with ALS, Lou Gehrig’s Disease, so I’m not going to be a public figure any more.”

The 63-year-old McMichael, known as "Mongo," has been a key fixture in the Chicago sports media scene since his playing heyday when he was seen hoisting coach Mike Ditka up when the Bears won the Super Bowl in 1985.

He played for the Bears for 13 years, and upon his retirement in 1994, he went on to become a professional wrestler for World Wrestling Federation (WWF) and World Championship Wrestling (WCW). 

McMichael, a Pro Bowler in 1986 and 1987, had co-hosted the Bears pre-game shows on ESPN 1000 in Chicago. He coached the Chicago Slaughter of the Continental Indoor Football League from 2007-13. 

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