GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A Grand Rapids man who has officiated several Super Bowls is now honoring his late wife by giving football fans a chance to win a trip of a lifetime.
“I never could have achieved what I achieved, even in college, without the support of Cathy,” Carl Paganelli said of his wife of 32 years.
Cathy Paganelli cared for their two daughters when Carl Paganelli was on the road, hoping to work his way into the NFL and ultimately the biggest sport event in the country.
Made it, he did: Carl Paganelli and his two brothers have all officiated Super Bowls. Carl Paganelli says he and Perry Paganelli were also the first brothers to officiate the same Super Bowl.
“It’s the biggest stage of any sports event. Probably the proudest moment (for me) was when Perry and I did Super Bowl XLI in Miami,” Paganelli said.
But in July 2016, Cathy Paganelli died after a 4 1/2 year battle with cancer.
“Faith Hospice came in in the last 14 days of Cathy’s life and helped us through the dying process, and they were phenomenal. After Cathy passed, they provided bereavement counseling for me and my family. When I went to the game in Minneapolis with my brother Perry, I missed Cathy a lot because those were some of the best times we had, at the Super Bowl,” Carl Paganelli said.
“So that’s why I’m trying to give back and donate two tickets – so somebody else can experience the joy that I had, bringing my family and Cathy to the Super Bowl,” he added.
The Paganelli package: two Super Bowl tickets and three nights stay at a hotel a half-mile from Atlanta’s stadium, right in the heart of Super Bowl village. Raffle tickets are $100 each, with proceeds going to Faith Hospice’s bereavement program.
“It’s for a good cause and Cathy would want me to do this,” Carl Paganelli said.
The winner will be drawn Sept. 12 at Faith Hospice’s fall luncheon.