By the nature of his work, of course, his legend will live on. Many of his photographs, which span an era dating back to Curly Lambeau’s days as head coach and up to Brett Favre’s time as quarterback, are etched in Packers fans’ memories forever.
Since Beiver’s death on Oct. 13 at the age of 87, the organization has received numerous inquiries from fans regarding the availability of some of Biever’s work for their memorabilia collections.
The Packers Pro Shop has carried Biever’s photos for years and has a considerable number of his classic shots available online, and an even more extensive selection available in store for fans to purchase, both framed and unframed.
One of the more popular Biever photos available features head coach Vince Lombardi being carried off the field on the shoulders of offensive linemen Jerry Kramer and Forrest Gregg following the Packers’ victory in Super Bowl II, which turned out to be Lombardi’s last game as Green Bay’s head coach.
Another depicts the famous Packers’ sweep with Kramer and Fuzzy Thurston lead-blocking for fullback Jim Taylor, with the architect of the play – Lombardi – visible on the sidelines in the background.
Perhaps the most popular photos, of course, is of quarterback Bart Starr’s game-winning sneak in the “Ice Bowl” back on Dec. 31, 1967. As many know, that wasn’t shot by Biever himself but by his son John, who was a teenager at the time.
Vernon Biever was a teenager himself when he began his relationship with the Packers as an 18-year-old student at nearby St. Norbert College in De Pere. He began photographing Packers games as a freelancer for the Milwaukee Sentinel in 1941, and five years later he became the team’s official photographer.
His dedication to the organization and quality of his work were honored in 2002 with his induction into the Packers Hall of Fame.
“I’m sure it would be difficult for anyone to appropriately describe the impact that he had on the Packers because of his exceptional work,” said Starr, who introduced Biever at his induction banquet. “I don’t know of a photographer who did the type of work he did, who excelled as he did, for so long. It’s one thing to be outstanding, but when you’re outstanding for the length of time that he was, I find it almost mind-boggling.”
The task couldn’t have been easy, but last year Biever actually selected his five favorite photos and talked about them for a story in the Packers Yearbook. You can see his choices and read the story by clicking here.
Photos available online through the Packers Pro Shop can be found here. For additional information about photos available in-store, call (920) 569-7510 or (800) 992-5750.
Additionally, the Packers Hall of Fame is planning a tribute to Biever, with a special exhibit slated for spring. Details will be announced in 2011.