Thomas Leavitt, a former quarterback at the University of New Hampshire and now a successful banker and community leader in Vermont, gave the following speech after accepting the NFF Vermont Chapter's Distinguished American Award on May 1, 2016.
For its practitioners on the gridiron, football is decidedly not a lifetime sport.
I took my last snap, completed my last pass, and booted my last punt the month that 52 Americans began 444 days of captivity after being taken hostage at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. That was a long time ago.
But, during perhaps the most formative 12 years of my life, the game was central and defining. This was when I learned about how to compete, how to play by the rules, how to win with dignity, how to handle a supporting role as a good teammate and how to hold up under disappointment.
It is when I had the privilege of learning life lessons from coaches named Hogan, McCarthy, Wheeler and Bowes.
It is when coaches I did not have the honor of playing for, like Jordan an ...
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