Hero’s never fade from life or memory and the New Orleans Saints will make sure of that today with a statue to feature former safety Steve Gleason who is currently battling ALS or Lou Gehrig’s Disease.
Forget Saints fans. No one that watches football will ever forget the moment that happened on September 25, 2006 when the Saints faced the Atlanta Falcons in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome that had just re-opened for the first time since Hurricane Katrina in August 2005.
Gleason created what was referred to as the “biggest beer spill” in New Orleans when he blocked a punt in the first quarter and it was returned for a touchdown by defensive back Cutis Deloatch.
Gleason could be seen running along the sidelines with his arms outstretched and long hair flowing from underneath his helmet. The Superdome, the city, and the Saints came alive showing that they were back.
How appropriate that a statue will be presented today in Champions Square next to the Superdome in honor of Gleason and that moment. Even more appropriate is the title of the statue, “Rebirth”.
The statue will feature Gleason blocking the punt symbolizing the rebirth of a franchise that was rumored to be leaving New Orleans at the time and also the rebirth of the city itself.
The event is scheduled today for 12:00 p.m. CT but is by invitation only. Sadly, one person who won’t be allowed to attend will be suspended head coach Sean Payton.