Sadly, there’s some sobering news coming out of the Charlotte football program Sunday afternoon.
Early last week, 49ers offensive line coach Phil Ratliff was hospitalized after suffering what was described at the time as a cardiac event. According to multiple media outlets in the area, he remained hospitalized after suffering a heart arrhythmia last Monday.
A tweet from the school late last night stated that Ratliff was in “grave condition.” It was reported that Ratliff was on life support with no brain function and that family members were gathering at the hospital to make one of the hardest decisions anyone could ever possibly have to make.
That painful decision was heartbreakingly made, and Ratliff has passed away at the age of 44.
Ratliff had been an assistant at Charlotte since 2012, one year prior to the program’s first season at the FCS level. Prior to Charlotte, which will compete at the FBS level this season, he had served as a tight ends coach at Marshall, his alma mater where he was a two-time All-American lineman in his playing days.
Below is the final tweet posted by Ratliff to his personal Twitter account.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Ratliff’s wife, two children, family, friends, colleagues and anyone else affected by his passing.
(Photo credit: Charlotte athletics)
UPDATED 4:49 p.m. ET: Marshall football’s official Twitter account has sent out a series of tweets mourning the loss of Ratliff.
UPDATED 6:37 P.m. ET: The Charlotte football program also released a statement addressing Ratliff’s passing.
The Charlotte 49ers regretfully announce the passing of assistant coach Phil Ratliff, today. He was surrounded by family and friends. His adoring wife, Jenni, was by his side.
He was an amazing man and was loved by all who knew him. We appreciate the continued thoughts and prayers for the Ratliff family. They are beyond grateful for the overwhelming love and support.
The family appreciates your respect for their privacy during this difficult period.
Memorial service arrangements will be forthcoming.