Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A classy close for a classy guy...

I've written about NFL linebacker Scott Fujita before, and how much I admire him for being one of just a few professional athletes who have been tremendously vocal advocates for marriage equality.

Fujita, age 33, played four seasons with the New Orleans Saints, including their victory in Super Bowl 44. He played his last three seasons with the Cleveland Browns, and also spent time with the Kansas City Chiefs and Dallas Cowboys. Over his 143-game career, he recorded 767 tackles, 23.5 sacks, 11 forced fumbles and seven interceptions.

Earlier today, Fujita signed a one-day contract with the Saints, and then announced his retirement, so he was able to retire as a member of the team he felt closest to. And he couldn't have signed the contract in a more beautiful place—at Machu Picchu in Peru. He traveled there with former Saints teammate Steve Gleason, who is currently fighting Lou Gehrig's Disease.

"What better place to reach the end of the road," Fujita said in a statement, "than here at 10,000 feet above sea level, in the Peruvian Andes overlooking Machu Picchu with my dear friend Steve Gleason?"

A tip of the hat and strong thanks to someone who has always championed equal rights. Here's hoping the next chapter of his career is as fulfilling—and sees him continuing to help fight the battles we still face.

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