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Former Patriots player shares life lessons

posted Feb 11, 2014, 8:05 AM by Communications Coordinator   [ updated Feb 11, 2014, 8:13 AM ]
The sixth, seventh and eighth graders who heard Tony Collins speak at McLaughlin Middle School were born well after his career with the New England Patriots ended. But 30 years ago, Collins was a powerful running back for the Pats, and helped the team make its first Super Bowl appearance in 1986. Not long after that, drug use cut short Collins’ time in the NFL.

Now Collins wants the students and athletes in Manchester to know how the decisions he made back then affected every aspect of his life – from career to personal relationships. He’s educating kids across the country on the importance of making positive choices. McLaughlin brought all of its students together on Tuesday morning for a school-wide assembly to hear Collins’ story.

Collins talked about growing up wanting to be in the NFL. . .how excited he was when his dream became reality while he was in college. . .and the spiral into despair he fell into because of his choices to abuse drugs. He told the students about the importance of positive thinking and respecting parents and teachers who often know how to best guide kids toward good decisions.

His was a powerful story for the middle schoolers to hear. We're glad he took the time to visit!