March 15, 2018 – Sharing personal stories of recovery is important to break the stigma associated with the disease of addiction. This week, a formal professional football player visited a high school in Lehigh Valley to discuss his experience.
Ex-NFL quarterback Ryan Leaf stopped by Schuylkill Valley High School to share insight into addiction and life in recovery to more than 500 students, according to the Reading Eagle. Leaf played three seasons in the league with the San Diego Chargers and the Dallas Cowboys:
Leaf’s message Tuesday wasn’t to tell others “don’t do this.” But he did encourage the audience to “understand why you do it.” He stressed that because someone is a good athlete, that doesn’t make them a good person. Equally, no person’s story is more important than another’s. We are all “flawed human beings trying to get better.”
Alayna Cerankowski, a junior basketball and volleyball player at Schuylkill Valley, said hearing the presentation was “motivating to see how you can go from such a high to such a low and work yourself back up.”
Her classmate, basketball player Andre Rivera, was moved by how Leaf, “fought back, and how resilient human beings can be.”
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Read the full story on the Reading Eagle’s website.