Eric LeGrand

Category: NFL
Fee Range: $10,000 – $20,000

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Eric LeGrand is a retired football player turned motivational speaker whose story of courage and perseverance serves as a shining example for those that have heard his story and those that hear it for the first time. As a junior playing for Rutgers University, Sports Speaker Eric suffered a severe back injury making a tackle in a game against Army in October of 2010. Eric was paralyzed from the neck down and was given only a 5% chance of ever walking again. Yet just 3 months later Eric had regained sensation throughout his body and movement in his shoulders. He now spends 5 days a week rehabbing at the Kessler Rehabilitation Institute in New Jersey, the same rehab center that helped the late actor Christopher Reeves. In the time since the injury Eric has written a book and started his own foundation to serve as an ambassador for spinal cord injury research.

A little over a year after the life-changing incident, Eric would return to Rutgers for an emotional appearance that garnered Sports Illustrated magazine’s Fan’s Choice Best Moment of 2011. His alma mater also introduced the Eric LeGrand Believe Fund which raises money to support Eric as he continues to rehab his injury. At the 20th annual ESPY Awards Eric was awarded the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance and in 2012 he was drafted as an honorary member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Nike would release a special edition LeGrand jersey with all the proceeds going to his Eric LeGrand Patriot Saint Foundation. He has since joined with the Reeve Foundation to create Team LeGrand, a similar organization with the same message spreading awareness and raising funds for spinal cord research.

In 2012, he recorded the ups and downs of his journey which released in both a children’s book and adult version called Believe: The Victorious Story of Eric LeGrand and Believe: My Faith and the Tackle That Changed My Life. That same year he would sign an endorsement deal with Subway to become a spokesperson for the brand.  Eric continues to rehabilitate his injuries and served as a commencement speaker for Rutgers graduating class of 2014.