PARADE Magazine and Inspireum Announce:
Addison Marshall of Fulshear, Texas, Named Winner of Inspireum Football Awards;
Designated Most Inspirational High School Football Player in America
New York, NY and Bend, OR, January 14 - Addison Marshall of Fulshear, Texas, has been named the winner of the Inspireum Football Awards, announced in the January 15 issue of PARADE. According to his nomination: After Hurricane Katrina forced the Marshall family to move from Louisiana to Texas, they soon realized they’d have more drastic hurdles to overcome. Having been diagnosed with Acute Lymphobastic Leukemia in 2009, Addison Marshall dropped football in exchange for an I.V. pole. A positive attitude kept this athlete fighting his illness. That is, until April 2010, when Addison’s Leukemia relapsed into his central nervous system. In spite of all of the hardship, Addison continued to work out while in and out of the hospital and supports his team on the sidelines whenever it is possible. His determination to never give up is what truly inspires anyone who hears his story. As the winner of The Inspireum Football Awards, Marshall will receive a $7,500 college academic scholarship.
“The nominees for this year’s awards were of a truly incredible caliber. They each brought a passion for the game and an enthusiasm for positively impacting the lives of those around them,” said Awards Chairman Drew Bledsoe. “Addison Marshall is a young man of high character, who exhibits great courage in the face of a debilitating disease, and he provides inspiration on a level that is nearly unmatched.”
Four runners-up for the Inspireum Football Awards will appear on Parade.com this weekend. They are:
Quinton Anderson of Joplin, Missouri
After a tornado destroyed his hometown of Joplin, Quinton realized that was only the beginning of what may have been the hardest time of his life. Turning to his football team for support while mourning the loss of his parents just goes to show how tight-knit this town really is. Rebuilding his life from the ground up started with healing the physical wounds caused by the natural disaster, including a fractured skull and a shattered eye socket. Working through physical therapy while still making practice for the Joplin Eagles football team is what truly makes this athlete commendable.
Shane Halpin of Gulf Breeze, Florida
When Shane was just seven months old, binocular dysfunction and developmental delays hampered his motor skills. Simple functions like running were a major task and forced him to give up his dreams of playing basketball and baseball. However, Shane has established himself as a team captain and starter for the Dolphin football team at Gulf Breeze High School despite his small size. In 2008, Shane was faced with yet another challenge when he was struck by and pinned beneath a truck while attending the Florida Senior Bowl Game. Shane's mother and the frightened crowd shoved the unresponsive driver and his truck off of Shane before he was rushed to the hospital. Shane recovered to be the inspirational team leader he is today.
Rashawn King of Apex, North Carolina
Upon entering high school, Rashawn (Ray) King was a promising two-sport athlete with college prospects and varsity letters. In the June after Ray’s sophomore year, following complaints of sluggishness, weakness and unexplained pains, he was diagnosed with leukemia. He was immediately checked into the hospital, where he spent five weeks undergoing chemotherapy and kidney dialysis. Throughout it all, the community rallied behind Ray, who provided inspiration to his teammates behind the battle cry “Pray for Ray!” “Pray for Ray” became “Play with Ray!” as Ray was cleared for full contact football this season.
Kaleb Mackey of Afton, Oklahoma
Even with one good arm, one good hand, and a limp, Kaleb is extremely impressive to watch on the field. Kaleb experienced a stroke before he was even born and has been a fighter since. Kaleb has blood pressure issues and is constantly in pain, however his determination causes him to refuse to accept “no” for an answer. He keeps pushing despite the pain, and ultimately landed a starting spot on the Afton High School Eagles football team.
The “Fan Favorite”, determined 100% by fan votes, is Ryan Anderson, of Kent, Ohio, who was diagnosed with osteogentic sarcoma, otherwise known as bone cancer. The news was devastating to Ryan’s family, teammates, and community; but through it all, Ryan remains the positive force that keeps everyone around him from falling apart.
$2,500 will go to each of the four runners-up, $1,500 to the fan favorite, and $1,000 to each of the six remaining finalists from the top 12. You can learn more about the Inspireum winners at InspireumFootballAwards.com and Parade.com.
The Inspireum Football Awards celebrate outstanding young athletes - not because of their statistical performance, but because of their ability to inspire and motivate teammates, classmates and communities. Since 1963, PARADE has celebrated Americans’ passion for football by naming its annual All-America High School Football Team. Honoring the best high school players in the country. This year, for the first time, PARADE partnered with Inspireum, the Oregon-based company that develops youth programs, to honor the nation’s most inspiring football players with The Inspireum Football Awards.
The Inspireum Football Awards finalists were chosen from 50 semifinalists, 40 selected by Trusted Sports Foundation and 10 by a fan vote. A second round of voting determined the top 12 finalists. The winner and runners-up were chosen by an esteemed Selection Committee, which includes former NFL greats Troy Aikman, Drew Bledsoe and Shaun Alexander. The fan favorite was determined by online voting. A total of $25,000 in academic scholarships, provided by the Trusted Sports Foundation, will be awarded to those players who bring the most heart to the game, as opposed to the highest stats.
About Inspireum and The Inspireum Football Awards
Inspireum utilizes the power of social media, technology and community-based marketing to share inspirational youth achievement in sports and community service. We discover, amplify, and celebrate young people who inspire their schools, teammates, friends, family, and community. The Inspireum Football Awards celebrate inspirational young athletes who embody the values of character, courage, contribution and commitment through the sport of football. Recognizing and rewarding these outstanding players inspires other youth to pursue sports as a positive, action-oriented path to self-discipline, leadership, strong academic performance and a healthy lifestyle.
PARADE, the most widely read magazine in America, is distributed in more than 600 of the nation’s finest newspapers. The magazine, which launched in 1941, now has a circulation of 32.4 million and a readership of 67 million. Each Sunday in PARADE and every day at Parade.com, our mission is to connect emotionally with Americans about the issues they care most about and move them to action.
Contact: Sandy Henderson, Inspireum (541) 848-9509
Alexis Collado, PARADE (212) 450-7014