Gridiron "stars" honored by Marines
By Gunnery Sgt. Kim Worrell
| | June 30, 2001
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. --
Marines from the 1st Marine Corps District in Garden City, New York, honored two local high school football "stars" June 30 at the Outback Steakhouse Empire Challenge - New York City verses Long Island All-Star Football Game held at Hofstra University Stadium before a crowd of more than 11,000 fans.Eddie Gordan, Freeport High School and line backer for the Long Island All-Star team and Victor Parsley, Holy Cross High School and defensive back for the New York City All-Star team, were each presented the "Esprit de Corps Award for Dedicated Teamwork" by Boomer Esiason, former NFL quarterback for Cincinnati, the Cardinals and the New York Jets and Colonel Tom Tyrrell, commanding officer, 1st Marine Corps District. The award recognized one player from each team, selected by Boomer and the coaches, who exemplified dedication to team, spirit and motivation. The Marines also presented Boomer Esiason, a native of West Islip, N.Y., with the "Leatherneck Leadership Award" for the work he does with the Nation's youth through the efforts of the Boomer Esiason Foundation and the Gunnar H. Esiason Scholarship program. In addition, Ron Duckstein, Outback Steakhouse joint venture partner for the N.Y. Metro-area, was awarded the "Semper Fidelis Award for Dedicated Service to the Community" for his dedicated support of events such as the Empire Challenge. The Empire Challenge "gives outstanding high school football players in the New York City and Long Island area a chance to showcase their talents on the same gridiron while raising Money and awareness to fight Cystic Fibrosis," according to a spokesperson for the foundation.The Marine Corps supported the event to help raise awareness to fight Cystic Fibrosis as well as to honor area high school talent. More than 100 young men and women from the five boroughs and Long Island who are currently in the Marine Corps' Delayed Entry Program were on-hand to watch the NYC All-Star team win 17-10 over the LI All-Star team and to witness the presentation of the awards based on leadership and the portrayal of the Marine Corps' Core Values of honor, courage and commitment.