The legacy of Green Bay Packers legend and Pro Football Hall of Famer Arnie Herber was honored at Green Bay West High School in Green Bay, Wis., as part of Allstate and the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s “Hometown Hall of Famer™” program. The community not only experienced an exciting ceremony, but also a very sentimental reunion for the extended family of Herber. The event kicked off with a pep assembly honoring West High School’s spring sports teams. From the marching band to the dance team, the students helped to set the stage for a very exciting ceremony. Green Bay West Principal Mark Flaten served as the emcee for the event, thanking Allstate and the Pro Football Hall of Fame for this great honor.
Allstate agent and Green Bay native Jon Allcox told the students how, “we at Allstate understand the value of hometown pride, which we can see here today at Green Bay West High School with this great turnout.” He explained that special moments like these are the reason why Allstate is a part of this program.
George Veras, Pro Football Hall of Fame Enterprises president and CEO, shared some words about the meaning behind the plaque which really hit home for the students. Highlighting the fact that this plaque is truly an extension of the Hall of Fame, Veras encouraged all of the students to come and visit Canton to experience the rich Packer history on an even deeper level.
Herber’s granddaughter, Robin Miller, kept the energy going with her very engaging account of growing up with a football legend as a grandfather. Miller’s father passed away while she was very young, so Herber stepped in to help raise her and her brothers. After unveiling the “Hometown Hall of Famers™” plaque, she shared several stories of Herber, who apparently was quite the practical joker, and had the whole crowd laughing.
“This is such an honor for my family. We loved our grandfather very much as you can imagine. The Hall of Fame and Allstate Insurance Company are giving me a great opportunity here today to help honor a man that was so important to me,” Miller told the crowd.
A former basketball and football star at Green Bay West High School, Arnold “Arnie” Herber is arguably one of the NFL’s first premier passers, changing the game for all future quarterbacks. After attending Regis College in Denver, Herber returned to his home town of Green Bay where he began working as a handyman in the Packers’ clubhouse. Eventually, coach Curly Lambeau agreed to give the inexperienced player a tryout for the team. The year was 1930, and Herber officially joined the Packers for $75 a game.
The NFL began keeping official statistics in 1932, and that year Herber won the league passing title. He went on to win that same title in 1934 and 1936, and led the Packers to NFL titles in both 1930 and 1931. When coach Lambeau signed receiver Don Hutson in 1935, the Herber-to-Hutson duo was born and in just their second game together they connected for an 83-yard touchdown reception against the Chicago Bears. By the end of the 1935 season the Herber-to-Hutson combination connected 18 times for 420 yards and seven touchdowns.
Herber retired from the Packers in 1940, but was brought out of retirement by the New York Giants in 1944. After two years with the Giants, Herber retired for good with the reputation of being pro football’s great long-distance passer.
Herber was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1966 and passed away in October of 1969 at the age of 59.