As you know by now, Duce Staley is leaving the Eagles for a similar job with the Detroit Lions. He’ll be Dan Campbell’s assistant head coach and oversee a running back group that includes D’Andre Swift and Kerryon Johnson.

Duuuuuuuuuuce first came to town in 1997, with a brief stop in Pittsburgh separating his Eagles playing and coaching careers.

Now he’s making his departure official with a farewell letter to Philadelphia, which was published at NBC Sports Philadelphia.

Here’s a snippet:

Dear Philadelphia

I want to thank all of you for welcoming me and allowing me to be part of your family for 7 years as a player and 11 years as a coach. Playing for and working for the Philadelphia Eagles and our fans has been the honor of my lifetime. I still remember like it was yesterday getting drafted and coming here in 1997 and playing for Ray Rhodes and then Andy Reid.

My first few years were tough in the win-loss column, but I knew we were on the verge of building something special. Sure enough, the first game of the 2000 season, the Pickle Juice game, brought a win over our divisional rival Cowboys and kicked off the start of a successful couple decades that only a couple of teams have been able to match in the entire National Football League.

I am very sad to leave this great organization and city and fans, but I am looking forward to the growth opportunities that lie ahead despite the uncertainties. The way you embraced me, gave me the best nickname I’ve ever heard (Duuuuucccceeee), the way you expect the best from your athletes, the fact you deserve our best given what you’ve invested in us — all of this motivated me to reach heights I never thought possible growing up as a country boy in South Carolina that loved playing football more than I was necessarily good at it.

It’s great stuff from Duce. You have to go to NBC Sports Philadelphia to read the whole thing. Give them their deserved click.