Athletes to students: Make wise choices
The Game Plan for Life program brought in 10 speakers to challenge more than 4,000 students at A.L. Brown and Rowan-Salisbury high schools to make the right decisions when it comes to peer pressure relating to alcohol and drug use.
Game Plan for Life Coordinator Derrick Crawford, along with former Washington Redskins great Renaldo Wynn, the Rowan/Kannapolis ABC Board, the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office and the Salisbury Police Department teamed up to present the series of programs.
The concept of this initiative is to educate youth about the legal and personal consequences of alcohol and drug use. Students are reminded that peer pressure is often the obstacle that creates that opportunity for a bad decision that can negatively impact their lives forever.
Each of the speakers have experienced the same challenges as today’s youth, and they all have their personal stories. Each of them has battled personal issues, but all are successful in their careers today.
The presenters for this programs were:
Clinton Portis, a star running back for the Washington Redskins; Darrell “Bubba” Wallace, a 20-year-old race driver who was recently selected by Forbes Magazine as one of their 2014 “30 under 30” sports stars list; Perry Tuttle, the 1981 Orange Bowl game MVP, former Buffalo Bills player and current chaplain for the Charlotte Bobcats; Renaldo Wynn, a legendary star with both the University of Notre Dame and the Washington Redskins who currently works for his former Redskins coach Joe Gibbs; Dr. Richie Rolle, an oral maxillofacial surgeon, graduate of Notre Dame where he played for legendary coach Lou Holtz and two-time cancer survivor; Richie Parker, who despite being born with no arms is in his ninth year as a vehicle engineer for Hendrick Motor Sports; Steve Israel, who has played for the Rams, 49ers and Patriots; Michael McDowell, driver of the No. 95 car for Leavine Family Racing Operations in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and No. 27 Toyota car part-time for SR Motorsports in NASCAR Nationals Series; Leonard Wheeler, who played for the Bengals, Vikings and Panthers in the NFL; and Gerard Littlejohn, the community relations director for Dick’s Sporting Goods who formerly worked with Lowes Corp. and the Charlotte Bobcats.