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Joe Paterno dead at 85

Joe Paterno has died, the Associated Press reported.

Paterno memorial 2012 01 22Enlarge
Candles, many burnt out, circle the statue of Joe Paterno, the former Penn State football coach, outside of Beaver Stadium in State College, Pa., in the early hours of Jan. 22, 2012. (Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

The Paterno family announced former Penn State football coach, Joe Paterno has died, the Associated Press reported.

According to a statement released by the family on Sunday:

"He died as he lived. He fought hard until the end, stayed positive, thought only of others and constantly reminded everyone of how blessed his life had been. His ambitions were far reaching, but he never believed he had to leave this Happy Valley to achieve them. He was a man devoted to his family, his university, his players and his community."

GlobalPost reported earlier:

Paterno, 85, was diagnosed with lung cancer soon after being fired by Penn State on Nov. 9, 2011, for his inadequate response to allegations that retired defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky had sexually molested a boy at the university. Sandusky has been charged with sexually abusing 10 boys over 15 years, the Chicago Tribune reported.

More from GlobalPost: Joe Paterno, former Penn State football coach, in serious condition

The news of his death comes the day after CBS News falsely reported that he died Saturday night, causing confusion and anger. Penn State's student news organization, Onward State, originally made the false scoop. 

They apologized about the misinformation on Twitter:

"To OS followers: Our 8:45 pm tweet about Joe Paterno's death appears to be inaccurate, according to Jay Paterno, who says he's alive. We were confident when we ran with it, and are still trying to figure out where our process failed. We apologize sincerely for error."

Onward State's managing editor, Devon Edwards, resigned shortly after and issued an apology.

"I never, in a million years, would have thought that Onward State would be cited by the national media, and today, I sincerely wish it never had been. To all those who read and passed along our reports, I sincerely apologize for misleading you," Edwards wrote.

Paterno was in the hospital since Jan. 13 for observation after what his family called minor complications from his cancer treatments. 

According to previously unreleased audio from the Washington Post, where Paterno gave the first and final interview after news of the scandal broke, he explained what he attempted to teach as a football coach:

My thing was play as hard as you can, don't be stupid, pay attention to details, and have enough guts in the clutch.

During his near 46 years as head coach, Paterno has led the Penn State to two national championships and five undefeated seasons. The child abuse scandal was a tarnish to Paterno's otherwise historic accomplishments.

On the heels of Paterno's 409th winning game, the most of any coach in Division 1 college football history, his "career to which he had devoted nearly his entire adult life ended under a dark, unfathomable cloud," TIME wrote.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120122/joe-paterno-dead