The stars shined bright in Baltimore on Monday March 12, 2013 as the Ed Block Courage Foundation hosted their 35th Annual Courage Awards presentation.
The event, which took place at Martin’s West, featured NFL players who were selected by their respective teams to receive the honor of the Ed Block Courage Award. Each of the NFL’s 32 teams were represented and the night was a great celebration for a wonderful cause.
The Baltimore Ravens selected Terrell Suggs as their 2012 Ed Block Courage award recipient. Suggs, the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year in 2011 suffered an Achilles injury during the off-season that forced the linebacker to miss the first six weeks of the 2012 season. Many people as well as the Ravens front office expected him to miss most of the 2012 season however Suggs returned in Week seven of the season against the Houston Texans.
“It’s a humbling and it’s an honor to know that my teammates chose me to receive the Ed Block Courage Award”, Suggs stated. “That means they saw the hard work I put in to get back so we could all play together again. I’m very honored and flattered. The rehab was extremely painful and excruciating, but I got through it. My trainer Mark Smith, and my rehab therapist, Sam Bell, did an excellent job of pushing me through everyday and [making sure I] received the proper treatment.” Suggs however, was not present for the event and Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith accepted the award on Terrell’s behalf.
Newly signed Raven Chris Canty also received the honor from his prior team, the New York Giants. Canty received a huge ovation when he took the stage to accept his award. Canty suffered a knee injury late in the Giants’ 2011 Super Bowl season. The injury was significant enough to require surgery; however, Canty played the rest of the season and helped the Giants win their fourth Super Bowl. Following the season Canty underwent micro-fracture surgery to his left knee. Chris has been involved in numerous charities and has established the Chris Canty Foundation.
“This is a true honor to have been selected as the Ed Block Courage Award recipent.” Canty replied when asked about receiving the honor. “It is always great to give back to the community and it is important that we do that for the kids.”
Prior to the awards banquet the players visited the Baltimore Ravens Courage House, St. Vincent’s, on Sunday morning and the Chick Webb Recreation Center on Monday morning. There the players spent time with kids and shared plenty of laughs and smiles.
“It is always great to see the kids smiles when we visit. They have been through enough and if we can make them smile then it is all worth it,” stated Tennessee Titans wide receiver Kenny Britt.
Local sports radio host Scott Garceau and former Baltimore Colt Tom Matte served as masters of ceremonies. The Gala featured so much more than just the awards. A tribute to the Ravens Super Bowl season was played and the crowd reponded with numerous cheers. San Francisco wide receiver Kyle Williams was a great sport when asked ”How about those Ravens?” by Scott Garceau.
“Well if we had to lose at least we lost to a classy organization,” responded Williams.
The Ed Block Courage Award Foundation is dedicated to improving the lives of abused, neglected and at-risk children and ending the cycle of abuse. The purpose is to raise Awareness and Prevention of child abuse. That objective is coupled with the Foundation’s commitment to celebrating players of inspiration in the NFL. for more information please visit http://www.edblock.org/
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