SUPER BOWL XXXIX Tom Brady's grandmother dies
Margaret Brady, 94, held parties each year Patriots played for the title.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Tom Brady's grandmother always threw quite a party -- especially when her boy was playing in the Super Bowl.
It won't be the same Sunday.
Margaret Brady died Wednesday night in the San Francisco area at age 94, four days before her grandson plays in another championship game for the New England Patriots.
"She always watched the games. She had Super Bowl parties the last three years at her nursing home," the two-time Super Bowl MVP said. "She was really the talk of the nursing home in those days. She would sit right in front of the TV and we would get phone calls from her after the games."
Brady's grandmother had a stroke earlier in the week, Patriots spokesman Stacey James said Thursday.
"I'm sure she'll be looking down on us Sunday," the quarterback said. "That's one more person up there who will be cheering for us."
Brady patiently answered questions about his grandmother's death during the players' final media availability.
"She had been very ill for quite some time. It was a situation where in the last week or so, things took a turn for the worse," he said. "Hopefully, I can live to be 94 and have a full life like she did."
While clearly a bit distracted, Brady said he didn't believe his grandmother's death would hinder preparations for the Philadelphia Eagles. His father urged him to focus on the game and let the family handle all the necessary arrangements.
"The focus for me this week has been a little bit different," Brady acknowledged, "but I'm sure when game time comes around, my focus will all be on the Eagles."
Brady's teammates sympathized with his loss.
"It's tough when you lose a loved one, period," running back Corey Dillon said. "I feel for him."
Brady was very close to his grandmother. He grew up about a mile away from her home, and the family spent every Christmas and Thanksgiving together.
"She had a swimming pool, so we would go over there and use the pool," Brady recalled. "She was a great woman."
Losing such a revered family member added some perspective to the biggest game of the year.
"We're so driven here, we're so focused ... we get so wrapped up in this part of our life that other things escape us," Brady said.