DeMarcus Ware Shared His Childhood Horror Stories While Honoring Teammates He Lost En Route To His Hall Of Fame Gold Jacket

Former Dallas Cowboys and Denver Broncos’ pass rusher DeMarcus Ware was inducted into the Football Hall of Fame this weekend. His speech revealed details of his past that were not widely known, and he also honored those fallen players who he felt deserved a seat at the enshrinement table.

While a Troy University student-athlete, before being picked up in the first round of the 2005 NFL Draft, Ware said a man with a gun assaulted him in a parking lot during a trip home from school.


“Without warning, I was knocked across the head with a gun,” Ware said before the crowd at his Hall of Fame induction on Saturday. “A knife dropped to the ground, and I picked it up. And when I looked up, all I could see was the potential shooter’s eyes and a gun barrel pressed against my head. All I heard was my family say, ‘Don’t kill him.’

“There was an eerie silence after which I simply said, ‘This isn’t me,’ and I dropped the knife. At that moment I knew God gave me a second chance and I had to do something with it. That was my turning point. The memories of those parking-lot lights and the sounds of those screams, ‘Don’t kill him,’ became the fire that empowered me. You can imagine how many years that night echoed in my head.”

Through The Fire To The Gold Jacket

Ware grew up in Auburn, Alabama, before accepting a scholarship from Troy University. He was a two-time All-Sun Belt Conference selection for the Troy Trojans football team, where he played from 2001-2004. Ware rose above his young reality through athletics, which kept him away from many of the trappings of the street.

“I was blinded by my environment as a child; domestic violence, drugs, gangs; but my surroundings taught me how to be relentless, limitless and resilient,” Ware continued.

During the speech, Ware also said that he reserved seats “in his heart” for his former teammates who passed: Demaryius Thomas, Ronnie Hillman, and Marion Barber.

“We lost some guys too soon,” Ware said. “I held these seats in my heart for you guys here today. Keep resting in peace.”

DeMarcus Ware shared his testimony and honored those not here to wear the gold jacket to top off a Hall of Fame career.

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