Some may have never heard of Steve Gleason while others credit him for “the greatest night of their lives”.
2006 was an emotional year for New Orleans, the city where Gleason spent his entire NFL career. After hurricane Katrina hit it looks as though the city was lost, the stadium where Gleason and the New Orleans Saints used to play had been turned into a home for thousands of refugees.
One year later, the stadium was full again but this time with screaming fans desperate for hope and looking to their football team for just that. On the first drive of the game they got it. After a failed 3rd down conversion the Atlanta Falcons were forced to punt, a punt that Gleason blocked and was returned for a touchdown.
A play many wouldn’t think much of but the moment of deliverance was so special to the city that they even turned it into a statue with the heading, “Rebirth”:
Now Gleason is looking for his own kind of hope. In 2011 he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as ALS. His story of viral inspiration is being made into a movie. Here’s the trailer, fair warning it’s a tear jerker:
The movie isn’t due out for a while but HBO did a special on the NFL star and his beautiful family, sharing the whole story behind the legend that is Steve Gleason.