For most, an 80th birthday brings cake, presents, and a party with friends and family.
For Jim Brown, a statue marks the occasion.
The statue of Brown's likeness will be unveiled during Browns Alumni Weekend this season. According to ESPN.com, the team has commissioned sculptor David L. Demming, a Lakewood, Ohio native. The statue will sit outside the southeast corner of the stadium. The club is also planning other ways of honoring one of the best players in NFL history.
"Everyone admires the incredible impact that Jim Brown has made for Cleveland, the Browns and the NFL throughout his lifetime," owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam said in the release. "And we have had the special opportunity to know and learn from his contributions to our team on a personal level, as well. It is only fitting that one of the most iconic professional football players and members of Cleveland and the Browns is commemorated with this statue as he will always be such a permanent fixture in our city."
Brown seemed humbled by the statue in the quote in the release.
"It humbles me to be honored in this manner," Brown said. "Dee and Jimmy Haslam, thank you for the respect and love. Your investment in Cleveland is unparalleled. To the fans of the Cleveland Browns, I guess I'll always be with you – thank you."
Brought on as an advisor in 2013 by Haslam, Brown has enjoyed a more public role in past years. New head coach Hue Jackson told Cleveland.com he plans to lean heavily on Brown's advice.
"I'm looking forward to finding out as many things as Jim Brown knows that can help our football team be the best that it can be," Jackson told Mary Kay Cabot at the Super Bowl. "We're talking about a guy that did it as well as anybody ever, so it would be really smart on my part to sit and talk to him and have him tell me the things that he sees and that he's felt.''
As evidenced by the statue announcement, Brown's public image has seemingly healed well in the past decade. Brown was beset by seven alleged incidents of assault or violence spanning from 1965-2000, according to CNN.
Despite off-the-field troubles and an early retirement at age 30, Brown has left his indelible imprint on the sport. Brown rushed for 12,312 yards and 106 touchdowns, reaching the Pro Bowl in each of his nine seasons. The Syracuse grad led the club to its last championship in 1964 and retired one season later.
As many have said, Brown is undoubtedly one of the best running backs and players to ever play in the NFL.
To honor Brown on his birthday, NFL Network will air an hour-long special entitled "Jim Brown: 80 Years and Running" tonight at 8 p.m. ET. According to the Browns release, the program "highlights key moments of Brown’s life, legacy, as well as how he set the framework for players pursuing post-league careers in the media industry." The show will also include a roundtable talk with Brown and fellow Hall of Famers Marshall Faulk, Curtis Martin, Marcus Allen, Franco Harris, and Eric Dickerson.
NFL Network will also debut an episode of "A Football Life" focused on Brown and his career later this year.