Walter Hilgenberg (September 19, 1942 – September 23, 2008) was a professional American football player.
Hilgenberg was born in Marshalltown, Iowa. His family moved to Wilton (then known as Wilton Junction) where he grew up and graduated from Wilton High School. He attended the University of Iowa, where he starred on both sides of the line of scrimmage, as a linebacker and as a guard. He played 16 seasons in the National Football League, with the Detroit Lions and Minnesota Vikings.
In 1964, he was drafted in the fourth round by the Lions. In 1968, he was traded from the Lions to the Pittsburgh Steelers, but was waived before ever playing a game in Pittsburgh. After being waived by the Steelers, Hilgenberg was picked up off waivers by the Vikings, for whom he played until he retired after the 1979 season. During that time, he was one of 11 players to play in all four of the Vikings' Super Bowl appearances (Super Bowl IV, Super Bowl VIII, Super Bowl IX, Super Bowl XI).
Hilgenberg's daughter Kristi was Miss Minnesota Teen USA 1998.
Hilgenberg's grandson, Luke, is currently a linebacker for the Iowa Hawkeyes.
Hilgenberg died on September 23, 2008, after battling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or Lou Gehrig's disease for several years.
By Dean Hanley
Page : 1