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|Federal lawmakers from Louisiana and Washington have submitted legislation to award former New Orleans Saints and Washington State football player Steve Gleason the Congressional Gold Medal David Njoku Jersey , the highest civilian honor awarded by Congress.
Sen. Bill Cassidy, a Louisiana Republican and doctor who helped sponsor the legislation, seeks to honor Gleason for his work as an advocate for people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.
"Steve Gleason was a hero for Saints fans and now he is a hero for all Americans as he finds hope and meaning in overcoming disability and creating greater opportunity for others who are disabled," Cassidy said.
The 41-year-old Gleason, famous for blocking a punt in 2006 on the night the Superdome reopened for the first time since Hurricane Katrina Joe Mixon Jersey , was diagnosed with ALS in 2011. He has spearheaded efforts through the Team Gleason foundation to develop and provide technology to help ALS patients live longer, more fulfilling lives. Those include devices that track eye movements to help people who are paralyzed type words that can be transformed into speech. Gleason has used the technology to communicate, post messages on social media, address lawmakers from around the world and give motivational speeches to athletes.
Congress this year approved the Gleason Act, which provided funding to help ALS patients get those devices.
The legislation submitted Thursday also is sponsored by Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.; Sen. John Kennedy, R-La.; Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers Chuck Howley Jersey , R-Wash.; Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La.; and Rep. Cedric Richmond, D-La.
Murray praised Gleason for making "his biggest impact as a tireless advocate in the health world" and changing "countless lives for the better."
The bill must be passed by the House and Senate and signed into law by the president before the medal can be awarded.
Previous recipients include Thomas Edison, Robert Frost, Bob Hope, Walt Disney, Roberto Clemente Dan Hampton Jersey , John Wayne, Jesse Owens, Mother Teresa, Rosa Parks, Jackie Robinson, Ruth and Billy Graham, and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King.
The Los Angeles Chargers have signed safety Derwin James Benardrick McKinney Jersey , their first-round pick.
The Chargers announced the four-year deal Friday.
James was the 17th overall pick during the draft in April. The Florida State defensive back was among the highest-rated defensive players in the selection field, but he surprisingly slipped into the second half of the first round, where the Chargers eagerly grabbed him.
James has lined up largely as a strong safety so far in the Chargers' offseason workouts, but coach Anthony Lynn views James as a versatile talent who could fill several roles on the Bolts' defense.
James was the final players in the Chargers' seven-man draft class to sign his rookie contract.
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