Hall of Famer Bobby Mitchell died on Sunday at the age of 84, according to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Mitchell, who became the first black player on the Redskins when he was traded to Washington in 1962, had a significant impact on another former Redskin, Brian Mitchell, both on and off the field.
“He was a great football player but I think 25,000 times more of a human being,” said Brian, who was drafted by the Redskins in 1990.
As Brian grew closer with the Hall of Famer, he was especially impressed by his efforts to fight for equality in the African American community.
“I knew that he was the first African American to come to D.C. and play, but then when I began to find out more about him he was the guy that was out there fighting, a social activist, doing things to help out our black community, which truly truly impressed me,” Brian expressed.
Brian took great pride in not only knowing the Hall of Famer but having the same last name.
“I remember someone asking if I was a relative and he said 'no.' And then he told me, he said ‘every time you ran another touchdown, I was like he’s a cousin. Oh, that’s my boy, that’s my son,” Brian said.
To this day Brian strives to be as influential as Bobby was.
“This one man who did so much had so much impact on so many people throughout this community, it said a lot to me. He’s going to be sorely missed. We love you Bobby, take care,” Brian said.
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