Yesterday, CBS news reported that Paterno had died, but a family spokesperson denied that, and even sent a tweet to clarify: "Dad is alive but in serious condition. We continue to ask for your prayers and privacy during this time."
Then this morning, in a text message, his family said the famed Nittany Lions coach has died:
"It is with great sadness that we announce that Joe Paterno passed away earlier today. His loss leaves a void in our lives that will never be filled. ..."
Paterno's bad health was reported in mid November, shortly after being as coach of the Nittany Lions in the aftermath of the arrest of Jerry Sandusky, a longtime Paterno assistant coach who now faces against children.
In the end, it would be difficul to sum up the impact Joe Pa had, but in their message, Paterno's family said making an impact was his mission:
"As the last 61 years have shown, Joe made an incredible impact. That impact has been felt and appreciated by our family in the form of thousands of letters and well wishes along with countless acts of kindness from people whose lives he touched. It is evident also in the thousands of successful student athletes who have gone on to multiply that impact as they spread out across the country.
And so he leaves us with a peaceful mind, comforted by his "living legacy" of five kids, 17 grandchildren, and hundreds of young men whose lives he changed in more ways than can begin to be counted."