Former Chiefs head coach Gunther Cunningham dies at 72

Kansas City Chiefs coach Gunther Cunningham watches the video replay of a missed 44-yard field goal attempt by Chiefs kicker Pete Stoyanovich in the final seconds of the fourth quarter Sunday, Jan. 2, 2000 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. The Oakland Raiders won 41-38 in overtime, keeping the Chiefs out of post-season play. (AP Photo/Cliff Schiappa)
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DETROIT (WIBW) -- Former Kansas City Chiefs head coach Gunther Cunningham passed away over the weekend. He was 72.

A longtime coach, Cunningham served as defensive coordinator for four seasons under then-head coach Marty Schottenheimer before taking the reins himself in 1999.

Cunningham led the Chiefs for two seasons, posting a 16-16 record, before he was fired. After a stint with the Titans, Cunningham returned to Arrowhead Stadium in 2004 for five more seasons leading the defense.

Cunningham then went to Detroit, where he was hired as the Lions' defensive coordinator and later became a senior coaching assistant, before wrapping up his 34-year NFL coaching career in 2016.

On Monday, the Lions issued a statement saying Cunningham

"will forever be remembered as one of the great men of our game. He left a lasting impact on every person who was fortunate enough to work alongside him during his more than 47 years as a coach - including 34 years in the National Football League, the final eight of which were spent here in Detroit. Our organization is truly honored and proud to have been included in his distinguished coaching legacy. We extend our heartfelt sympathies to his wife, Rene, and their entire family."

The Detroit Free Press reports Cunningham, who was born in Munich, Germany, just after WWII, had recently been battling cancer.