Posts tagged: Jerry Kramer
Boise State president Bob Kustra is joining the rush of support to get former Idaho Vandals All-American and Green Bay Packers legend Jerry Kramer into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Boise State announced Thursday it is urging “Bronco Nation” to participate in a letter writing campaign. “In addition to being one of the greatest football players of all time, Kramer also is an outstanding citizen of Boise and a true ambassador of Idaho,” wrote Kustra in his June 15 letter to the Senior Selection Committee. “His commitment, volunteerism, and loyalty to our community are values shared by Boise State University and qualities we feel are equally important as his athletic accomplishments.” … In 1969, Kramer was named the ‘Outstanding Guard of the First 50 Years of Football’ by the NFL, but he is the only player on that list who is not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame/Idaho Press Tribune. (IPT photo by Charlie Litchfield)
Members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio are among the most elite, recognizable and honored athletes of their time. They have been rewarded for their skill and dedication to the game, but the roster of Hall of Fame legends remains incomplete — one great player from the glory days of the Green Bay Packers is missing. That oversight has football fans and an entire state rallying around the cause of Packer legend and Sandpoint and University of Idaho alumnus, number 64, Jerry Kramer. Kramer is the only member of the NFL’s 50th Anniversary All-Time team not in the Hall of Fame, but even more impressively those who played with and against him agree that Kramer belongs in Canton. The University of Idaho in conjunction with Gallatin Public Affairs, is asking all football fans to put the old rivalries aside and join together in support of Kramer’s nomination to the Pro-Football Hall of Fame/Associated Press. More here. (Charlie Litchfield Idaho Press Tribune photo)
Question: Do you think this crusade will succeed in getting former Sandpoint/UI Vandal star Jerry Kramer into the NFL Hall of Fame?
Former Green Bay Packers and University of Idaho football star Jerry Kramer shares his memories of his friend Harmon Killebrew, during a memorial service for the former Minnesota Twin in the gymnasium of Payette High School, in Killebrew's hometown of Payette. Killebrew, who hit 573 home runs in his long major league career, died last week at his home in Scottsdale, Ariz., of esophageal cancer at 74. Joe Jaszewski & Idaho Statesman capture Killebrew memorial in a photos here. (AP Photo/Idaho Statesman, Joe Jaszewski)
Question: Who is your favorite living baseball legend?
If it weren’t for the work of three doctors way back when, Jerry Kramer might not have become a star for the Idaho Vandals and Green Bay Packers. Nor would he have received his first game ball without playing a down during his junior year at Sandpoint High. I discovered how Kramer almost missed his sterling career as a pro footballer by picking up a garage sale special in Hayden recently – Kramer’s 1969 book, “Farewell to Football.” For $1, hardbound. Among other things (including his start in football at Farmin Elementary), Kramer describes how he was laid up when he was awarded the game ball following Sandpoint’s 45-0 victory over Bonners Ferry. Seems he’d nearly blown his arm off with his grandpa’s double-barrel, 10-gauge shotgun while duck hunting with Bulldog running back George Kom four days before. Kramer’d used the wrong end of the gun to poke a ball of moss into the water from his perch on a two-story-high rock/DFO, Huckleberries, SR Handle Extra. More here.
You sports fans out there know that game balls are routinely given to players who performed exceptionally well during a football game. I bet you can’t guess how Sandpoint High/UI/Green Bay Packer great Jerry Kramer received his first game ball without playing a down in Sandpoint’s 45-0 victory over Bonners Ferry in his junior year. He was laid up after nearly blowing his arm off with his grandfather’s old double-barrel, 10-gauge shotgun, while duck hunting with another Bulldog star George Kom. Seems Kramer used the wrong end of the gun to poke a ball of moss into the water from his perch of a two-story high rock. And it went off. In Kramer’s “Farewell to Football” (my $1 garage sale find), the future NFL star said his arm looked like hamburger afterward. “I’d caught 15 or 20 pellets of No. 2 shot, pretty good-sized shot, in my side, and it burned like hell.” He credits local physicians Bill Hayden, Neil Wendle, & J.P. Munson with saving his arm. More: Jerry Kramer’s Wikipedia page. (AP file photo: Jerry Kramer (No. 64) helps carry Vince Lombardi off field after Green Bay’s 33-14 win over Oakland in Super Bowl II in January 1968)
Question: Did you know who Jerry Kramer is before I brought him up in two posts today?
I went garage saleing for the first time this year w/Mrs. O on Saturday — and scored 2 treasures: A brand-new, still with shopping tags, for $2 and former Sandpoint/UIdaho/Green Bay Packer great Jerry Kramer’s 1969 “Farewell to Football” for $1. In his book, Kramer talks about playing football at Farmin Elementary, how he almost killed himself 2 or 3 times in Sandpoint, and how he did a lot of partying before he married during his Vandal days. One entry caught my attention. He describes how a UI professor — whom he described as “a complete ass” — discouraged him from being an engineer, calling him out in front of the whole class for being a football player. Seems the prof didn’t think Kramer could play football and study engineering. Kramer immediately dropped out. Kramer writes: He could’ve ruined my life. If I’d been seriously injured, I might not have been able to play football any more. … I wouldn’t have been prepared in the profession that really interested me.” GoVandals.net photos of Kramer as UI, Green Bay player. (AP file photo: Jerry Kramer & 2009 UI great Mike Iupati)
Question: Has anyone ever discouraged you from pursuing a career or life that interested you?