NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) — Hank Steinbrenner, the co-owner of the New York Yankees and oldest son of the late George Steinbrenner, has died at the age of 63. The team confirmed the news with a statement on Tuesday afternoon.

The New York Yankees mourn the passing of General Partner and Co-Chairperson Henry G. “Hank” Steinbrenner, who passed away earlier today at his home in Clearwater, Fla., from a longstanding health issue. Mr. Steinbrenner was 63.

“Hank was a genuine and gentle spirit who treasured the deep relationships he formed with those closest to him,” said the Steinbrenner family in a statement. “He was introduced to the Yankees organization at a very young age, and his love for sports and competition continued to burn brightly throughout his life. Hank could be direct and outspoken, but in the very same conversation show great tenderness and light-heartedness. More than anything, he set an example for all of us in how comfortably he lived enjoying his personal passions and pursuits. We are profoundly saddened to have lost him and will carry his memory with us always.”

Steinbrenner had just celebrated his birthday on April 2. He took over stewardship of the franchise alongside his brother Hal following their father’s passing in 2010. In recent years, Hank had stepped into more of a background role with the team, allowing his brother to become the public face of the franchise.

The eldest Steinbrenner did also nurture a passion for breeding, raising and racing horses serving as the Vice President and Director of Bay Farms Corporation and as a board member of the Ocala Breeders Sales Company.

That passion for competition extended into the auto sports world as well, joining his son George Michael Steinbrenner IV, in the formation of Steinbrenner Racing in 2016. The team spent two seasons on the Indy Lights developmental circuit in 2018 before partnering with Harding Racing to form a new Harding Steinbrenner Racing team in 2019. The newly formed outfit began competing at the IndyCar top level in 2019 and earned its first victory on March 24, 2019 at the Circuit of Americas in Austin, TX.

Steinbrenner is survived by Hal, sisters Jessica and Jennifer, and his four children, George Michael, John, Jacqueline and Julia.

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