Eric LeGrand is the epitome of Jersey Grit. He was a football standout at Rutgers University and after a devastating hit in October of 2010 Eric was left paralyzed from the neck down after breaking the C3 and C4 vertebrae in his neck.

He was put on a respirator and immediately sent to a rehab to try and repair and rebuild his movement and neck. Eric was relentless in working at his therapy and all through his initial recovery never gave up and at least on the outside, always portrayed a positive demeanor and attitude. Eric continued working on how to breathe and asked to be taken of the ventilator a month after the tragic hit.

Through his hard work and guidance from his doctors and therapists in January of 2011 Eric got movement in his shoulders and some arm movement. His constant hard work became an inspiration to other teammates and friends. In fact in October of 2011 Eric returned to Rutgers High Point Stadium before the West Virginia game. That so inspired the fans, teammates and media that Sports Illustrated named it the Fan’s Choice Best Moment of 2011.

I’ve been with Eric several times at various charities and social gatherings and every time I see him, he lights up the room with such a wonderful vibe. Eric has devoted his life sharing his positive thoughts and remains a big inspiration to so many, including me.

He was so appropriately inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame in 2012 and has shared a message about overcoming adversity and coping with diversity. It’s a great message. Thank you Eric for your strength and inspiration in helping us cope with adversity. Enjoy the video.

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