FILE - President Barack Obama speaks at Rec Hall on the Penn State University campus in State College, Pa., Thursday, Feb. 3, 2011. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

FILE - President Barack Obama speaks at Rec Hall on the Penn State University campus in State College, Pa., Thursday, Feb. 3, 2011. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

President Barack Obama has offered his condolences to the family of legendary Penn State football coach Joe Paterno, who died Sunday of lung cancer.

The White House says the president spoke with Paterno's wife, Sue, and son, Jay, on Monday to express his condolences.

The White House says the president recalled fond memories of when he first met Coach Paterno and said he and first lady Michelle Obama would keep the Paterno family in their prayers.

Penn State is planning a memorial service on Thursday for Paterno, who was fired in November after he was criticized over his handling of child sex-abuse allegations leveled against his former assistant coach, Jerry Sandusky.

Paterno won two national championships and 409 games - the most in the history of major college football.

 

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pennsylvania, pennsylvania state university, penn state, joe paterno, cancer, president barack obama, sports
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