All-Pro Chicago Bears Kicker Robbie Gould recently learned that his teammates thought a lot of him. This realization came about when it was announced that Gould’s fellow Chicago Bears had nominated him to receive the 2016 Ed Block Courage Award.
Each year, the Ed Block Courage Awards honors those National Football League players who exemplify commitments to the principles of sportsmanship and courage. This award is unique in that the recipients are selected solely by a vote of their teammates. Every fall, all 32 NFL teams conduct a vote which results in each team selecting their Ed Block Courage Award recipient for the year.
“When your teammates are involved in the process, to know that you have that kind of respect, is what every player in the locker room wants,” Gould said. “You work with them 24/7 and spend every waking moment with the exact same goal of playing in the Super Bowl in mind. This kind of honor means more coming from them.”
On Tuesday, April 5, Maryville and the Chicago Bears will salute Gould at the Ed Block Courage Luncheon, an event that benefits the Ed McCaskey Scholarship Fund. The celebration will take place from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Maryville’s Des Plaines Campus, 1150 N. River Road.
The Ed Block Courage Award recipient symbolizes professionalism, great strength and dedication. He is also a community role model. For Gould, reaching out to his fans is a common, everyday occurrence. “I’ve learned that you can change lives by just stopping on the sidewalk for five minutes to say hello,” Gould said. “For players like me, sometimes those individual conversations change your perspective. They can enrich your life in some way as well.”
With this award, Gould will become a major component of the Courage House National Support Network for Kids. The Courage Award is named after Ed Block, the longtime head athletic trainer of the Baltimore Colts who was a pioneer in his profession and a respected humanitarian.
For more than 28 years, the Ed Block Courage Award Foundation has celebrated the courageous efforts of players in the NFL while raising the nation’s awareness of the plight of abused children in NFL communities. The Maryville Crisis Nursery is honored to be part of the Ed Block Courage House Network, in recognition of its support and quality care for children and families in the Chicago area. Open 24/7, 365 days a year, the Maryville Crisis Nursery prevents child abuse and neglect by providing free, short-term childcare for families who are dealing with medical emergencies, homelessness or other traumatic situations.
Gould credits his family, friends and network of supporters with helping him achieve the success he enjoys today. “You don’t get to the NFL without a lot of hard work and without the help of others – parents, coaches, friends, brothers, sisters,” he said. “But ultimately, you don’t do things to win awards. You expect to go in there and do your job and use your platform as a football player to change and improve the lives of others. You do it to give back to the community that has supported you.”
Tickets to the Ed Block Courage Award Luncheon are $65 each. Tables of eight can be purchased for $520. Proceeds will benefit the Ed McCaskey Scholarship Fund. The event will begin with a meet-and-greet with Gould and some of his Chicago Bears teammates. Luncheon and award ceremony will follow. For more information, please contact Tina Hock at 847-294-1982 or firstname.lastname@example.org.