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Former Tampa Bay Buccaneer Steve White Dead at 48 After 8 Years with Leukemia

People 9/1/2022 Natasha Dye

Elsa/Allsport Steve White © Provided by People Elsa/Allsport Steve White

Former NFL player Steve White passed away at the age of 48, his former team, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, confirmed Wednesday.

White had been diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia eight years before his death, and had received a bone marrow transplant.

"We are saddened to hear of the passing of Steve White after his courageous battle with cancer," the Buccaneers said on Twitter. "Steve was an impactful and respected member of the Buccaneers' vaunted defenses over six seasons and continued to connect with fans as part of the Tampa Bay community following his playing career."

"We extend our deepest condolences to Steve's family, friends, and loved ones," the statement concluded.

White first disclosed his cancer diagnosis on Twitter in 2017. He had been diagnosed with chronic lymphomatic leukemia in 2014, and told fans he would need a bone marrow transplant in April. "Hi. Many of you know that I have been dealing with a cancer (CLL) diagnosis over the last 8 years," he wrote on Twitter.

"I am now at a point where I need to go through a bone marrow transplant. It is something I knew would eventually have to happen since 2017 and now that day is actually here."

RELATED: Former Buccaneers Coach Bruce Arians Says His Secret Health Battle Changed His Life: 'My Real Scare'

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Friends and former teammates of White's reacted on social media, including Warren Sapp, who shared a favorite memory from his time with White on the field, as the two proudly tackled their opponent.

"RIP Steve White #94 in your Program but #1 in Our hearts!! #SmartToughAndGreatMan#DLine," wrote Sapp."

The Memphis, Tennessee native was drafted into the league in 1996 by the Philadelphia Eagles. White went on to spend six seasons in Tampa Bay, where he was a dominant defensive force for the Buccaneers.

White finished his playing career with the New York Jets in 2002.

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