Ron Noades, the former Crystal Palace chairman, has died, the club confirmed.
The 76-year-old lost his battle with lung cancer in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
"The thoughts and deepest sympathies of everyone at Crystal Palace Football Club are with his wife Novello and their family at this very sad time," the club said in a statement.
Noades took over at Selhurst Park in 1981 and left 17 years later.
In the years inbetween the club enjoyed one of its most successful periods, including promotion to the old First Division in 1989 and an FA Cup final appearance in 1990.
In 1991 the Eagles finished third in the top flight and also won the Zenith Data Systems Cup.
Noades stepped into the dugout in 1998 in a bid to prevent Palace's relegation, before leaving the club in the summer and buying Brentford.
He installed himself as the chairman and manager, winning promotion from the old Division Three at the first attempt.
Sad to hear my old Crystal Palace chairman Ron Noades has passed away , lovely man who cared deeply for the club .— Nigel Martyn (@nmartyn25) December 24, 2013
Resignation followed in 2000 and he sold the club in 2006 and Brentford added on their official site: "The club's condolences go to his family and friends at this time."
Former Palace and England goalkeeper Nigel Martyn tweeted: "Sad to hear my old Crystal Palace chairman Ron Noades has passed away, lovely man who cared deeply for the club."
So sad to hear of the passing of Ron Noades, former Chairman of @Official_CPFC. Thoughts and prayers are with Novello and the whole family.— Chuka Umunna (@ChukaUmunna) December 24, 2013
Sad to hear former Crystal Palace chairman Ron Noades has passed away. Our dealings were tough but fair. I liked him a lot. RIP Ron— Neil Harman (@NeilHarmanTimes) December 24, 2013