Longtime Packers Photographer Vernon Biever Dies

Longtime Green Bay Packers photographer Vernon Biever died on Wednesday.

Associated with the Packers since 1941, Biever began taking photographs as an 18-year-old freelancer for the Milwaukee Sentinel while a student at St. Norbert College in nearby De Pere, Wis. Five years later he became the Packers' official team photographer, offering to shoot the games for free in exchange for a sideline pass.

Biever caught Packer moments under the watch of every Green Bay coach from Curly Lambeau to Mike Sherman, an association with the team that lasted six decades and still continues today as his youngest son, Jim, remains a team photographer.

Biever started bringing his older son, John, and then later Jim, to Packers games when John was a high school freshman. While in high school, John shot the famous photo of Bart Starr's quarterback sneak for the winning touchdown in the "Ice Bowl," and he eventually went on to work for Sports Illustrated. Vernon and John were two of only six photographers to cover the first 35 Super Bowls.

A native of Port Washington, Wis., Biever covered the Packers' five championships during the Vince Lombardi era and was named the NFL's photographer of the year in 1984. In 2002, he received the ultimate honor from the Packers when he was inducted into the team's Hall of Fame along with wide receiver Sterling Sharpe.

"I know of very few non-players who have made greater contributions to the Packers' rich history and tradition than Vern Biever," said Starr, a close friend who introduced Biever at the induction banquet that summer. Starr reportedly had placed several calls and written letters to the Packers Hall of 
Fame selection committee to campaign for Biever's induction.

At the time of his induction, Biever had more first-place winners in the NFL's Hall of Fame photo contest than any other photographer.

View a photo gallery of some of Biever's classic photos.

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