O.J. Brigance, former NFL player and founder of the Brigance Brigade Foundation, an organization that supports ALS patients and their families, met with the Towson University football team and coaching staff on the evening of Tuesday, August 14th to speak to the team about his experiences with the game of football and the lessons he has learned in his battle with ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Brigance’s message to the team focused on three words that have been vital to his strength and success through adversity: faith, focus, fortitude. He walked the group through each word, and with it, examples of how the meaning applies to his life and how he has used the power behind each to remain humble in triumphs and encouraged during adversities.
(Read more on O.J. Brigance's visit to Towson University and about his 'Brigance Brigade' after the 'Jump')
"I was honored to have O.J. come and speak to the team," said Rob Ambrose, Head Coach for Towson University Football. "Having O.J. address them and allowing the team to participate with the Brigance Brigade Foundation has truly opened their eyes and minds. O.J.’s strength and inspiration will be a symbol of this team’s pride in the year ahead and the team has been challenged to face their upcoming obstacles with half of the strength of O.J. Brigance."
The Towson University football team first volunteered with the Brigance Brigade Foundation in May of 2012 at the Packard Center’s Fiesta 5K. Members of the football team supervised the Brigance Brigade Foundation’s Fun Zone for children and families which included inflatable activities and a face painter.
About the Brigance Brigade:
O.J. Brigance is one of the few professional football players to win both a Canadian Football League and National Football League championship, and the only one to do it in the same city, Baltimore, MD. Brigance joined the Ravens in 2000, helped the team claim a Super Bowl victory, and now works as Senior Advisor to Player Development. In 2007, Brigance was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, a motor neuron disease and is determined to win his fight against it. Following his diagnosis with ALS, O.J. and his wife Chanda created the Brigance Brigade Foundation to raise funds to improve the quality of life of ALS patients and their families by providing access to equipment and support services. As a partner with the Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at Johns Hopkins, the Brigance Brigade also supports the critical funding of research for a cure. For more information on the Brigance Brigade, visit www.brigancebrigade.org.