Reggie White honored as "Hometown Hall of Famer" at Howard - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Reggie White honored as "Hometown Hall of Famer" at Howard

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CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) -- The Pro Football Hall of Fame was well-represented in the Scenic City to help celebrate the life and local impact of football legend Reggie White with a new generation.

White's widow, Sara, and father, Charles, helped unveil a new plaque honoring one of the most dominant defensive players in NFL history during a ceremony Monday morning at Howard School of Academics and Technology, which is White's alma mater.

"This is a celebration of someone who is from this community and represented this community on the biggest stage at the Super Bowl," said Howard principal Dr. Paul Smith. "He was always an all-around great guy for this area."

More than 600 students attended the event, which was part of the "Hometown Hall of Famers" tour.

The plaque will be displayed permanently at Howard in hopes of inspiring a new generation of student-athletes who may not be as familiar with White, who left a legacy that stretched far behind the gridiron.

"He was more than a football player. He played basketball here and he was also in the band," Smith said. "But past that, he was a scholar and he loved the word of God. He was a great Christian.

"Just an all-around greaty guy."

White earned the nickname "Minister of Defense" for always being vocal about his faith. He graduated from Howard and starred in college at the University of Tennessee. He played two seasons in the United States Football League before being selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the 1985 Supplemental Draft.

He won NFL Rookie of the Year honors that fall, sparking a dominant 15-year, three-team NFL career that included 123 sacks, three NFL Defensive Player of the Year honors, 13 Pro Bowl selections and ten All-Pro nominations.

He helped lead the Green Bay Packers to a win in Super Bowl XXXI before retiring in 1998. He returned in 2000 to play one final season for the Carolina Panthers. His number 92 has been retired by the University of Tennessee, Green Bay and Philadelphia.

White passed away in December 2004 at the age of 43 and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006. The field at Howard's Red Gaston Stadium is named in White's honor.

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