Former Auburn quarterback Jeff Klein -- who was the Tigers' starting signal-caller in the 1999 season -- died this week after battling cancer. He was only 42 years old.
Klein's wife, Adrienne, made the sad announcement on Wednesday ... saying he passed away while "surrounded by his loved ones."
"At 2:36 PM this afternoon the love of my life was called home," Adrienne said. "His passing was peaceful and immediately followed the ceasing of life support."
Klein -- who played for Auburn from 1999 to 2001 -- was initially hospitalized last week after suffering serious back pain.
Unfortunately, according to Adrienne and Klein's GoFundMe page, an MRI later revealed spots on his lower back that turned out to be cancerous.
Adrienne said Klein's condition worsened rapidly ... explaining he suffered a stroke and brain bleeding earlier this week, before he ultimately passed on Wednesday.
"The outpouring of love and support from loved ones, friends, acquaintances, health care professionals and even perfect strangers has been an overwhelming blessing," Adrienne said.
"I'm grateful for every single one of you, and every prayer said. Please continue to pray for me, our boys and our families as we attempt to navigate through the heartbreak."
Klein threw for 1,139 yards and seven touchdowns during his three seasons with the Tigers -- and recently worked as a teacher, baseball coach and assistant football coach at Loachapoka H.S. in Auburn.
An Auburn Man through and through. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of former Auburn QB Jeff Klein. Rest In Peace, Jeff. pic.twitter.com/TwmQGcO2kO— Auburn Football (@AuburnFootball) April 13, 2022
An Auburn Man through and through. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of former Auburn QB Jeff Klein. Rest In Peace, Jeff. pic.twitter.com/TwmQGcO2kO
His former Auburn team, meanwhile, tweeted condolences to Klein's family following the tragic news Wednesday.
"An Auburn Man through and through," the football team said. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of former Auburn QB Jeff Klein. Rest In Peace, Jeff."