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ESPN Anchor Stuart Scott Dead at 49

1/4/2015 7:12 AM PST

Stuart Scott Dead -- ESPN Anchor Dies at Age 49

Breaking News
Legendary ESPN anchor Stuart Scott has died at the age of 49 ... after a long battle with cancer.

The network made the announcement Sunday morning.

Scott joined ESPN in '93 as the host of "SportsNight" ... and eventually became a staple on "SportsCenter." He became a national superstar using catchphrases like "Boo-yah," "Call him butter, he's on a roll" and "Cooler than the other side of the pillow."

In July, Scott received the Jimmy V Perseverance Award at the ESPYs ... and opened up about his battle with cancer.

"When you die, it does not mean that you lose to cancer. You beat cancer by how you live, why you live, and in the manner in which you live."

President Obama released a statement about Scott's passing ... saying, “I will miss Stuart Scott. Twenty years ago, Stu helped usher in a new way to talk about our favorite teams and the day’s best plays. For much of those twenty years, public service and campaigns have kept me from my family – but wherever I went, I could flip on the TV and Stu and his colleagues on ‘SportsCenter’ were there.”

Scott is survived by two daughters -- and at the ESPYs, said being a dad is the best thing he was ever able to do.

"Taelor and Sydni, I love you guys more than I will ever be able to express. You two are my heartbeat. I am standing here on this stage tonight because of you."

Scott was a fighter all the way 'til the end -- and had been doing intense MMA training in between cancer treatments.  Scott's sensei told TMZ Sports Scott REFUSED to let anyone take it easy on him in the ring and was known around the training facility as a "battle horse."

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