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Texans' late owner, Robert C. McNair, to be inducted into team's Ring of Honor

HOUSTON – At halftime of Houston's game against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, Robert C. McNair, the late founder of the Texans, will be inducted into the NFL team's Ring of Honor.

The Texans will celebrate McNair’s life and legacy each year on Oct. 6, which will become Founder’s Day.

McNair died on Nov. 23, 2018, at the age of 81. He is survived by his wife, Janice, sons, Cal and Cary, daughters, Ruth and Melissa, 15 grandchildren (10 granddaughters, five grandsons) and two great-grandsons. 

McNair was a leading businessman, sportsman and philanthropist in Houston who returned professional football to the city in 2002. His idea to bring the NFL back to Houston was approved on Oct. 5, 1999, after a 29-0 vote by the league’s owners to award him the 32nd NFL franchise. His influence and leadership also brought two Super Bowls to NRG Stadium: Super Bowl XXXVIII in 2004 and Super Bowl LI in 2017. 

As a committed leader in the NFL, McNair was actively involved in league affairs, including serving as chairman of the Finance Committee and a member of the Audit, Compensation and Chairman’s committees. 

He will join wide receiver Andre Johnson as the only inductees in the Texans Ring of Honor. Johnson was inducted in 2017.

Throughout his life, McNair and his charitable foundations generously gave more than $500 million to a wide array of scientific, literary, educational and faith-based organizations. McNair chaired The Robert and Janice McNair Foundation, the Houston Texans Foundation and The Robert and Janice McNair Educational Foundation for more than 25 years. 

His philanthropic leadership, humanitarian efforts and impact in the community were recognized far and wide with numerous awards and honors. 

The McNairs’ love of community is evident throughout the city, including projects such as the Baylor College of Medicine McNair Campus, the Houston Zoo’s Elephant Habitat, the jogging trail at Discovery Green, the United Way Computer Training Center, and the McNair Hall and Plaza at Houston Baptist University. 

The Association of Fundraising Professionals honored McNair with the highest recognition given for exceptional generosity and outstanding civic and charitable responsibility.

Additionally, Rice University named the building that houses its Jones Graduate School of Business after Janice and Robert McNair, and Baylor College of Medicine presented him with its first Pink Ribbon Hero Award for his commitment to fighting cancer.