LAKELAND — It was an inspiring night at the RP Funding Center on Tuesday as the Polk County Sports Hall of Fame inducted eight new members in its class of 2018.
The new members of the hall are Josephine Austin, Gene Engle, Wayne Gandy, Bob Georges, Ron Morrow, Jason Odom, Lorraine Bloeth Valerino, and Claude E. Woodruff.
After playing football at Haines City and then Auburn, Gandy was drafted 15th overall by the Los Angeles Rams in 1994. He played offensive tackle with the Rams, Pittsburgh Steelers, New Orleans Saints and Atlanta Falcons, appearing in 219 games with 205 starts over his 14-year career that ended in 2008.
“Character is forged in losing,” said Gandy, who spoke to the crowd of the Hornets’ struggles on the field during his playing days. “Tough times mold you to stand and fight; darkness has to be felt sometimes to grow.”
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