LIHU’E — About 150 Kaua’i High School students from grades nine through 12 took advantage of an afternoon meeting with some of National Football League players and cheerleaders who visited the island yesterday.
Earl Little, free safety for the Green Bay Packers, and Summer Alvarez, one of the cheer squad members for the San Diego Chargers, talked to the students about overcoming some of life’s challenges.
Little, who said he always wanted to be a football player from the time he was 4, said it is not an easy road, and students should not give up.
Using himself as an example, Little said he was lucky enough to be able to follow his dream and get a full scholarship at the University of Miami.
But there were more obstacles along the road to where he is today, and he emphasized to students to help each other, and not give up.
Little said that peer encouragement is just as strong as peer discouragement, and a friend can devastate another’s dream just by saying it’s not worth it.
The assembly was coordinated by leaders in the Kaua’i High School physical education department. A similar gathering featuring some of NFL players with Hawai’i ties took place at the same time for students at Waimea Canyon School.
About 300 students were expected to converge on Hanapepe Stadium for the NFL Youth Clinic scheduled for Thursday afternoon, coordinated by Nat Moore, who was scheduled to be honored by Kaua’i Mayor Bryan J. Baptiste for his efforts at bringing the event to Kaua’i.
The Pop Warner National Div. II champion Lihue—Patriots Pee Wee team was scheduled to be feted at this gathering as well. See coverage on the sports pages beginning on page B1.
NFL players who are here for this Sunday’s Pro Bowl on O’ahu, and made the Kaua’i trip, include Fred McCrary and Kynan Forney of the Atlanta Falcons; Maake Kemoeatu of the Baltimore Ravens; Little; Vince Manuwai of the Jacksonville Jaguars; Eric Parker and AJ Feeley of the San Diego Chargers; Jeff Ulbrich of the San Francisco 49ers; Erron Kinney of the Tennessee Titans, and Zack Crockett of the Oakland Raiders.
Summer Alvarez, one of the cheerleaders from the San Diego Chargers, did an impromptu dance routine for the high-school students. She is one of four cheerleaders who came to Kaua’i for the clinic.
Dawn Gilbert of the Arizona Cardinals, Colleen Murphy of the Seattle Seahawks, and Teresa Cunha of the San Francisco 49ers are the other NFL cheerleaders who came to Kaua’i yesterday.
- Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, may be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or email@example.com.