The Kansas City Royals on Friday announced that the team was mourning the loss of former owner and chairman David Glass — who died Jan. 9 of complications from pneumonia, according to the Glass family — shortly after selling the franchise to new ownership in November. He was 84.
“Like so many Kansas Citians, I am deeply saddened by the news of David’s passing,” John Sherman, the club's new owner, said in a news release. “His voice among other owners was so respected; he served on and led several Major League Baseball committees to better our game. His passion for baseball and love for Kansas City was the driving force in bringing success on the field for this franchise.
“Personally, I will be forever indebted to David for reaching out to offer the generational opportunity to be part of this proud and storied franchise. On behalf of the entire ownership group, I want to express deepest gratitude to the heart of a man who carefully placed a treasure in the hands of Kansas Citians. We pledge to carry it forward with his passionate commitment and selfless spirit.”
Glass, the former Walmart Inc. chief executive, owned the Royals for 20 seasons after purchasing the franchise in April 2000. He served as a member of the MLB Executive Council, the Media Oversight Committee, Diversity Oversight Committee, MLB Enterprises/MLB Properties Boards, MLB Advanced Media/MLB Network Boards (where he served as chairman through February 2015), Business and Media Board (served as chairman from 2015-17), the BAM Tech Board, Ownership Committee, Audit Committee (served as Chairman from January 2017 through November 2019), the Constitution Committee and he was a member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame Board of Directors in Cooperstown.
“Mr. Glass loved this game, this team, and our city with all his heart,” said Dayton Moore, Royals senior vice president of baseball operations and general manager, in the release. “He cared deeply for our fans and for the future of baseball. But above all, Mr. Glass placed an emphasis on putting family first which is what he stressed to our entire organization. We are forever grateful for his humble and supportive leadership, and we are beyond blessed that we were a part of his incredible life. Our thoughts and prayers are with his very special family.”
Glass began his business career in the 1960s in Springfield, Mo. He was later recruited by Walmart founder Sam Walton to become the company's chief financial officer, and he was promoted to president and CEO in 1988. He served in that capacity for 12 years, helping Walmart through a period of extraordinary expansion.
The family said a memorial will take place Jan. 27 at Northwest Arkansas Fellowship Bible Church in Rogers, Ark.
Dave Skretta, of the The Associated Press, contributed to this report.