The Houston Texans and Stonerside Stable founder passed away Friday at age 80.
The C&I crew would like to extend prayers and best wishes to the family and friends of Robert C. McNair, founder of the Houston Texans and Kentucky’s Stonerside Stable, who passed away Friday in Houston at age 80.
McNair, a prominent businessman, sportsman and philanthropist in Houston, endeared himself to many in the community when he helped return professional football to Houston in 2002, five years after the Houston Oilers — now known as the Tennessee Titans — moved to Nashville. Until 2008, he also owned the Stonerside Stable, a 1,947-acre thoroughbred horse farm and racing stable in Paris, Kentucky. Under McNair's stewardship, Stonerside was home to more than 275 racehorses, broodmares, yearlings and weanlings. From its inception in 1994, Stonerside won 72 Graded Stakes, including the 1997 Belmont Stakes (in partnership with Frank Stronach), and bred the winners of more than $50 million. Stonerside was named Breeder of the Year in 2007 and 2008 by the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association/Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders. McNair sold the farm and almost all of his bloodstock in 2008, when her left racing to focus on his NFL team.
National Football League commissioner paid tribute to McNair in a statement released Friday evening: “During his nearly two decades as an NFL owner, Bob McNair left a lasting mark on his city and our league. His leadership and determination brought the NFL back to Houston, built a magnificent stadium that hosted two Super Bowls, and his beloved Texans are in the midst of another successful season and are again contending for a place in the postseason. Off the field, Bob served with distinction as the chairman of the Finance Committee and was recognized in South Carolina, his adopted home of Houston, and elsewhere for his extraordinary philanthropic and community development work. He cared deeply about the league and was generous with his time and willingness to share his insights as an exceptional businessman. But above all, Bob was a family man. I extend my heartfelt condolences to Janice, their family, the Texans, and the entire Houston community.”
Former President George H. W. Bush praised his longtime friend for decades of charitable work in the Houston community: “Bob McNair wasn’t just the brightest Point of Light in Houston; he was one of the kindest and most generous people anywhere. He was simply The Best.”