Odell Barry — former Bronco, Northglenn mayor and prominent local businessman — dies at 80

Odell Barry, the former Broncos participant and Northglenn mayor who still left an indelible impression on Denver, died Monday at the age of eighty following a fight with congestive coronary heart disease.

Barry initial created his title with the Broncos, but it was his put up-soccer achievements that gilded his legacy. In 1980, he became the initial Black elected mayor in a big metropolis in Colorado. After his term was more than Barry led a life abundant in altruism, political activism, entrepreneurship and true estate.

“He was a mentor, a supporter, and somebody who was a big in our community and our point out,” U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse stated. “Here’s somebody who’s going to be sorely missed. He was tenacious on the discipline as a former soccer participant and all-star athlete, but for me, what I’ll don’t forget most is his willingness to mentor and to assist younger Black men and women of all ages who ended up functioning to try to serve the public.”

Born on Oct 10, 1941, in Memphis, Tenn., the Broncos took Barry out of the University of Findlay (Ohio) in the nineteenth spherical of the 1964 American Soccer League draft.

About two seasons, Barry appeared in 26 game titles as a return professional and wideout, amassing 2,215 overall return yards. As a rookie, he returned a punt for a landing and led the league in kickoff returns (forty seven, still tied for initial in Broncos background) and return yards (one,245, ranks 2nd).

A tricky hit in his 2nd yr needed operation, leaving Barry with one kidney and a scar operating down his tummy, and ending his soccer career. But Barry was just receiving started etching his legacy in Northglenn, where by he recently had a park named following him.

He commenced as the Northglenn recreation director, then moved into politics — and became the owner of Colorado’s initial entire-service Dairy Queen in the early seventies. Barry served on the Northglenn Metropolis Council from 1972 to 1979 right before getting elected mayor, and then remained a big figure in the Colorado Democratic Party following leaving office. Alongside the way he took delight in organizing the Many Sclerosis Evening meal of Champions for many several years and operating the Northglenn soccer conditioning camp.

“His most important legacy is what he did for the youth,” stated Barry’s son, Damon. “He mentored so many youth in Northglenn and the whole point out. Being an African-American guy in a predominately white metropolis (like Northglenn), and getting as properly-highly regarded as he was in the ’70s and that never altering — that is distinctive. People today of all colors and likes and creeds definitely looked up to him and highly regarded him. He made use of that (standing) to support mildew the up coming generation.”