Thomas family to receive ESPY Wednesday night - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Thomas family to receive ESPY Wednesday night

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LOS ANGELES (KWWL) -- Wednesday night the family of Ed Thomas will again have the opportunity to bring the coach's message of Faith, Family, and Football, to a national audience as they'll receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at this year's ESPY award show.

Past recipients of the award have included Nelson Mandela, Muhammad Ali, Pat Tillman, Billy Jean King, among other's.

"Unbelievable to be receiving an ESPY award, but again it's nothing but a tribute to my father," says Thomas' son Aaron, "The man he was, and also my mother, the way she's handled all of this adversity, and the tone she set even with me when we went to the press conference.  It was all her and the strong woman she is.  I'm just very blessed to have the 2 parents I've had, and we just hope to continue to make dad proud and do the things he would be proud of."

Ed Thomas' former players also consider this to be a well earned honor, but are also in awe of the whole magnitude of it.

"You just think of all the names that have won the award, Nelson Mandela, Muhammad Ali.  The list just goes on and on," says Chiefs' center Casey Wiegmann, who played for Thomas, "You throw in the Thomas family, and to me that's awesome."

"That's big for the family," agrees Jaguars center Brad Meester, a 1995 graduate of A.-P., "because the family has gone through a really tough time, and have really been strong throughout this.  They really have, and it means a lot to everybody and just shows how much character, how much Coach Thomas represented them."

The ESPY's air Wednesday night at 8:00 PM on ESPN.

Online reporter Mark Woodley

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