November 17, 2011
Today will commemorate the 20th anniversary for Mike Utley (#60) former offensive guard for the Detroit Lions. On November 17, 1991, during a crucial game against the Los Angeles Rams, while attempting to throw a block during a pass play, Mike Utley was paralyzed. Mikes’ story does not end on this monumental day in his life. His fighting spirit over the years symbolizes that Mike Utley is still going stronger than ever.
In the years following his injury Mike has not lost hope of someday walking off of Ford field. Countless hours of therapy, biofeedback, and weight training are a testament to his determination. So what else has Mike done in the last 20 years? Established a Foundation that has funded research, terrain parks, scholarship programs, equipment purchases for SCI individuals, therapeutic recreational programs, and disabled children’s therapeutic equipment. He bought a home, married Danielle, traveled throughout the US on public speaking engagements, learned to scuba dive, ski dive, snow ski, became a pyrotechnic enthusiast and a mentor for newly injured spinal cord injured individuals. Mike is a busy man but he does add that “for the last 20 years life has been good but not good enough until I walk off Ford field” “You have to continue to push every day.”
If you would like to be a part of Mikes’ 20-year anniversary, consider joining the 1st and 10 Club, or make a donation to help fund another scholarship or equipment purchase for a disabled individual. All contributions are tax deductible so this is a great time for your year-end giving. Check out our website www.mikeutley.org for more details about the Mike Utley Foundation and donation options.
Thank you for your continued support.