The Pittsburgh QB has had an incredible career in the NFL and announced his retirement today (Wednesday, 27 January). With Big Ben walking away from the NFL, we look at Ben Roethlisberger’s family, including his wife Ashley Harlan and sister Carlee.
Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger passed for a touchdown and had 123 yards in a 26-14 win against the Cleveland Browns to keep the Steelers’ slim playoff hopes alive.
Big Ben was emotional at the end of the game and looked to bid farewell to the home crowd after a stellar 18-year career. The two-time Super Bowl winner turns 40 in March and teased his retirement then, saying: “All signs are pointing to this could be it.”
Then, in Week 18, the Steelers beat the Ravens 16-13 in OT to reach the playoffs. On Super Wild Card Weekend, they faced the much-fancied Chiefs, losing 42-21 in what turned out to be Big Ben’s last game.
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Big Ben announces retirement
On Thursday, Ben confirmed the news, posting a video to social media announcing his retirement.
“The journey has been exhilarating, fuelled by a spirit of competition,” Roethlisberger said. “Yet the time has come to clean out my locker, hang up my cleats and continue to be all I can be to my wife and children. I retire from football a truly grateful man.”
Meet Ben Roethlisberger’s wife, Ashley Harlan
After announcing his retirement, fans want to know more about Ben Roethlisberger’s wife and family, who he’ll no doubt be spending a lot more time with. Ben Roethlisberger’s wife is Ashley Harlan, who was born on 17 July 1985 in Lawrence County, Pennsylvania.
Harlan was raised by Jeannie and David Harlan and has two brothers, Brandon and Brent Harlan. She played many sports growing up and graduated from St Francis University in Loretto, Pennsylvania, in 2009 with a degree in health science.
Harlan works as a physician in the cardiac surgery department at the UPMC Presbyterian Hospital in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Ashley and Ben’s love story dates to 2005, when they were introduced to each other by Harlan’s brother at a training camp. He was a huge fan of Roethlisberger and was keen for his sister to meet him. The two hit it off and started dating shortly after, eventually tying the knot in 2011 at the Christ Church in Grove Farms, Pennsylvania.
Ben Roethlisberger’s children
Ben and wife Ashley have three children. The couple welcomed Benjamin Jr in 2012, followed by Baylee in 2014 and Bodie in 2016.
Ashley Harland isn’t active on Instagram or other social media. However, Ben has shared pictures of their children to Twitter before.
Meet Ben Roethlisberger’s parents and sister
Ben Roethlisberger was born in Lima, Ohio, on 2 March 1982 to Ken and Ida Roethlisberger. Ben’s father was a former Georgia Tech pitcher and quarterback, and was even named to his high school’s hall of fame.
Ken played quarterback for two years but knee injuries ended his football career. For his last two years of school, Ken was a pitcher for the Yellow Jacket’s baseball team. He is of Swiss ancestry and his surname, Roethlisberger, has roots in Geissbühl, a hamlet in Lauperswil, Switzerland.
Two years after Ben’s birth, his parents Ken and Ida divorced. Ken eventually remarried Ben’s stepmother, Brenda Roethlisberger, but tragically Ben’s biological mother Ida was killed in a road accident.
“Any time you’re a kid and your parent passes, it’s tough,” Ben told the Denver Post. “I was truly blessed to have my father and stepmom, who I call ‘mom’ now, to be there loving me.”
Sports definitely runs in Big Ben’s family as his sister, Carlee Roethlisberger, was an excellent basketball player. A 6ft 1in forward, she played in college for Oklahoma and finished as a member of the All-Big 12 Academic team.
In 2016 Carlee Roethlisberger enrolled at Irvine Valley College and became a member of the school’s beach volleyball team. In 2017, Ben Roethlisberger and his family celebrated his younger sister Carlee’s wedding.