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Old 11-16-2010, 09:48 PM   #1
A Son of Martha

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Default NFL star remembers his roots

NFL star remembers his roots
Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Football star LaMarr Woodley sponsored a household goods giveaway in Saginaw LaMarr Woodley in Saginaw

SAGINAW (WJRT) -- (11/16/10) -- Hometown football hero LaMarr Woodley was in Saginaw today, trying to help area families have a happy Thanksgiving.

Woodley brought enough household supplies to help 500 families.

Woodley plays for the Pittsburgh Steelers now, but just a few years ago he was a Saginaw High Trojan, and he still considers Saginaw home.

He says today's effort happened because he wants to make sure people in Saginaw are taken care of.

In less than an hour and a half, Woodley's giveaway helped hundreds of Saginaw County families.

At its peak, the line of people snaked around the courtyard at the Civitan Recreation Center in Saginaw. Those who benefited say it was worth the wait.

"This helps our family. We have a big family. I have four children, so this helps us a lot," Denise Murphy said.

Murphy says these supplies will help her serve up a Thanksgiving dinner and save money. "Every little bit counts."

Woodley's family members, friends and volunteers helped make this giveaway possible. They handed out everything from paper towels to laundry detergent.

Woodley's mother, Janice Staples, says her son knows times are tough in his hometown. "It just makes me proud that, you know, he hasn't forgotten where he comes from and that he loves Saginaw, and he's gonna always, wherever he goes, Saginaw's always going to be home to him."

Sandra Wooten calls Woodley a role model on and off the field. "It's great when you have people who come from your hometown and make it, and give back to the community. That says a lot about him."

Murphy says there's even more to be thankful for this year. "Thank you Mr. Woodley."

People who benefited from today's giveaway say Woodley is a role model on and off the field.

The Saginaw native delivers on and off the field.

This NFL linebacker has tallied 5.5 sacks so far this season. Today he handed out thousands of sacks -- filled with supplies to make Thanksgiving Day less costly.

"It's tight for everybody, so whether they're working or not, it all helps. Every little bit helps," resident Sandra Wooten said.

The Steelers don't practice on Tuesdays. The break allowed Woodley to make a special trip home. "Growing up, it was important to me. I said if I was ever successful doing anything that I would always come back and give back."

Woodley's friends, family members and volunteers from his alma mater, Saginaw High, handed out everything from paper plates to paper towels outside the Civitan Recreation Center on the city's east side.

"If I can save, you know, save somebody some money here and there by coming back, doing the giveaway, that's what it's all really about," Woodley said.

"I just love to see smiles on people's face. You know, just coming back giving your time, that's more important. Giving your time is more important than giving money, sometimes."

This is the second year Woodley has hosted an event like this and he hopes to host a similar giveaway around Christmas.
(Copyright 2010 WJRT-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)
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