Vikings fan who vowed not to shave beard until Super Bowl win dies

Emmett John Pearson vowed to grow his beard until the Vikings won a Super Bowl. (Screenshot from a 2010 KARE 11 story)

Minnesotans are sometimes maligned as fair-weather fans, cheering on their hometown teams with a mix of shame and cynicism that astounds cheeseheads to the east. But Emmett John Pearson of Vasa, Minn., who died on Monday, was not one of those.

After the Vikings third Super Bowl loss in 1975, the farmer and former Red Wing school board member, vowed not to cut his beard until the Vikings won the big game, according to his obituary in the Rochester Post-Bulletin.

He told KARE 11 in a 2010 profile, “I just made up my mind I wasn’t going to shave it until they won.”

He appears to have kept his priorities in line despite years of disappointments from his favorite team. In addition to serving on his local school board for more than two decades, he was a leader in 4-H and active member of the Vasa Lutheran Church, according to his obituary.

He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Rosann, five children and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. As his obituary notes: “More than the Vikings, farming and education, his family was most important to Emmett and he loved them dearly.”

Pearson was 83.

(h/t: Deadspin)