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Gopher great, 49ers All-Pro lineman Keith Fahnhorst dies

The St. Cloud native had an incredible football career.

Two-time Super Bowl champion and former Golden Gophers great Kieth Fahnhorst died Tuesday at the age of 66, the San Francisco 49ers say

Fahnhorst, a native of St. Cloud, Minnesota, was a tight end with the Gophers but was asked to switch to offensive line when the San Francisco 49ers picked him 35th overall in the 1974 NFL Draft. 

He went on to play a key role in protecting Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Montana during San Francisco's glory years under head coach Bill Walsh, winning the Super Bowl in 1982 and 1985. He was a First Team All-Pro in 1983 and 1984 and was Second Team All-Pro in 1985. 

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Fahnhorst found out that he had Polycystic Kidney Disease when he was checked out by doctors after thinking he broke a rib during a game. He continued to play his career with the disease, and later received a kidney transplant from a Raiders fan he met in a Bible study group, according to a feature the 49ers did on Fahnhorst in 2015

He injured his neck and retired following the 1987 season and was later diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. 

Fahnhorst graduated from St. Cloud Tech High School and was an All-Big Ten tight end for the Gophers in 1973.  

His younger brother, Jim, also played for the 49ers. 

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