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article imageVince Papale talks football career, 'Invincible' and future plans Special

By Markos Papadatos     Jul 30, 2015 in Sports
Former football star Vince Papale, from the Philadelphia Eagles of the NFL, chatted with Digital Journal about his career and future plans.
His life was made into the feature film Invincible, starring actor Mark Walhberg in the lead role as Papale. "I am over the numbness of it all. It is pretty remarkable," he said. "Here we are, nine years later, and we are still running strong. I get texts and e-mails every time that it is on the air."
Papale praised Wahlberg for his bold acting performance. "He was phenomenal. Everybody in my neighborhood told me the 'perfect me' would have been Danny DeVito. Mark was just terrific. I can't imagine anybody but him playing that role. After working with him on the set, getting to know him and remaining friends with him, I am just proud to say that I know the guy. I watched him grow as an actor and as a person and father. We were all starting out with the same age children at the time, and it was pretty cool to watch our kids develop."
Throughout his respected career in sports, he was awarded Philadelphia Eagles' "Man of the Year" in 1978, the "Most Outstanding Special Teams Player" at the Philadelphia Eagles' 75th Anniversary and he received the 2012 Iwo Jima Leadership Awards, which was presented by the Marine Military Institute. "I love that award. It is treasured," he said. "I am looking right now at an American flag that was flown in Afghanistan in my honor, and I am looking at a proclamation from the United States government in my office."
He added, "The ultimate award was the receive that 75th anniversary award from the fans. I was one of them, and to have that dream come true, to go from the nosebleed seats to being caption of the team by your peers, was the greatest honor I could possibly receive."
Papale is quite busy with his motivational speaking. "I do a lot of that and I travel all over the country. I have had a couple of international events. The theme around my presentations is always around the 'dream' and that dreams really do come true. My favorite theme is 'born to be invincible.' Everybody has within them the potential to do something great or to do the unthinkable. I am booking regularly now, especially with the ninth anniversary of the movie."
Behind every strong man, there is an even stronger woman. That is the way he feels towards his dedicated wife, Janet. "She is my best team-mate, my biggest advocate and my best friend. We work well together, and it all works out," he said.
Papale feels that the key to longevity in sports are the "fans," as well as the "athletes being true and honest." "There have been many changes, but sports are so important to culture and society for so many reasons: being part of a team and sacrificing and having to adapt to change on a quick basis. There are so many positive aspects of sports, and they will always be there," he said.
"I am thrilled that my fans see me as a motivation or inspiration to them. I did it for them and for the dream. Keep the dream alive, and keep grinding and stay true to yourself and those in your family and everything will be fine," he concluded.
He defined the word success as "Giving it everything you have, and achieving whatever it is that you want."
For more information on former football star and motivational speaker, the "Invincible" Vince Papale, check out his official website.
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