The city of Reading, Pa., was ecstatic to welcome home their beloved hometown legend, Pro Football Hall of Famer on Thursday, April 18 during his “Hometown Hall of Famer™” ceremony presented by Allstate and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The students and staff of Reading High School pulled out all the stops to make the special ceremony a memorable day for the former Red Knight, and they didn’t disappoint.
The band played the school’s fight song as Moore was welcomed into the auditorium through a tunnel created by the high school’s football players and cheerleaders. Moore, excited to return to his alma mater, gave the audience a couple of jumping heel clicks as he walked onto the stage, an action that warranted many cheers from the crowd. The ROTC did a presentation of colors followed by the performing of the National Anthem by some of Reading High School’s teachers.
Reading High School football coach Robert Flowers welcomed guests to the ceremony and showed a video of Moore’s career that was created by a Reading High School teacher before turning it over to Allstate representative, Tom Cassidy. “Allstate is proud to partner with the Pro Football Hall of Fame to honor the hometown legacy of pro football legend through the Hometown Hall of Famer™ program,” Cassidy said.
Moore’s lifelong friend Dr. Robert Scott, who was also Moore’s best man at his wedding, served as the plaque presenter at today’s the ceremony. He shared with the audience the many accomplishments and challenges Moore encountered throughout his esteemed career, noting how Moore’s tenacity, perseverance and strength are what made him successful. “Lenny is an incredible, extraordinary character that has shaped many lives,” Scott said. “He is an all-around great being.”
Moore was truly humbled to walk the halls of his former high school as he reminisced about growing up in Reading and attending Penn State University, recounting many stories from his path in life. He gave the crowd a laugh when he struck the Heisman pose on stage. Above all, Moore was thankful for the people in his life that led him to where he is today. “It’s been an interesting life people,” Moore said. “I stand before you honored, blessed and appreciative in more ways than one.”
The ceremony concluded after Reading Mayor Vaughn Spencer made a proclamation declaring Thursday, April 18 as Day.
Also in attendance at the ceremony was Moore’s great nephew and former NBA star Donyell Marshall.
In addition to the plaque, a commemorative “Hometown Hall of Famers™” road sign will be on display in Reading.
A Penn State University alumnus, Moore was a first-round draft pick of the Baltimore Colts in the 1956 NFL Draft. A flanker and halfback with the Colts, Moore’s primary responsibility was to catch passes. Combined with quarterback Johnny Unitas, the pass-catch duo devastated the opposition for almost a dozen years and lifted the Colts to become one of the National Football League’s premier teams in the 1950s.
The 1956 Rookie of the Year helped lead the Colts to the NFL championship in 1958 where he contributed 1,683 combined net yards. After being sidelined by a string of injuries, Moore made his magnificent return to the NFL in 1964 where he had the best season of his career and was named the Comeback Player of the Year and the NFL’s Player of the Year.
Moore amassed a career-total of 12,451 combined net yards that included 5,174 yards rushing, 6,039 yards receiving on 363 receptions and 113 touchdowns. He was named All-NFL five times and is a member of the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1950s.
Moore was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1975.
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