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Rockne Freitas, first Native Hawaiian NFL All-Pro and longtime educator, has died

Rockne Freitas, a Native Hawaiian football legend who broke barriers on the field before going...
Rockne Freitas, a Native Hawaiian football legend who broke barriers on the field before going on to serve the community as an educational leader, has died, according to an official statement.
Published: Jun. 8, 2022 at 3:51 PM HST|Updated: Jun. 8, 2022 at 3:56 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Rockne Freitas, a Native Hawaiian football legend who broke barriers on the field before going on to serve the community as an educational leader, has died, according to an official statement.

HNN is seeking additional information.

Freitas had a stellar career on the gridiron, playing collegiately at Oregon State University before an 11-year career in the NFL.

He was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1967, and later played for the Detroit Lions and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Along the way he earned two All-Pro selections and a Pro Bowl spot, the first Native Hawaiian to do so.

After his playing career was over, Freitas returned home as an administrator in education.

He served as chancellor of Hawaii Community College, vice president for University Relations and chancellor for UH-West Oahu, where he retired in 2015. He was also associate athletic director, where he was instrumental in the Rainbow Warriors Football team’s move from the Western Athletic Conference to the Mountain West Conference.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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