They may be a generation or two apart and made their mark in different sports, but Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald and former Oklahoma State University men's basketball coach Henry Iba had at least one thing in common: They liked helping other people.
Fitzgerald was honored Monday night in Tulsa, Oklahoma, during the Henry P. Iba Citizen Athlete Awards, presented every year by the Rotary Club of Tulsa to a male and female athlete "who excel in their sport and who show a desire to help others," according to the Tulsa World. Here's a good article from the newspaper recapping the ceremony.
Fitzgerald spoke about his mother, Carol, taking Larry and his brother, Marcus, on trips to the Circle of Love groups in Minneapolis when they were children. Neither wanted to go but Carol insisted and was instilling in her sons the "values that were going to manifest in us as we got older," Fitzgerald told the assembled crowd. Philanthropy has become a large part of Fitzgerald's life. He established the Larry Fitzgerald First Down Fund, which received a $20,000 check Monday, and the Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund, in his mother's honor.
"This is what it’s really about -- respect for your fellow human beings,” Fitzgerald said Monday night, according to the Tulsa World. “To be recognized with an award such as this with Coach Iba’s name on it and to find out the great accomplishments he’s made as a coach but also in development of character of young men in his community and in this state, it means a lot to me. I’m really proud.”
The female winner was Betsy King, a Hall of Famer golfer who's won 34 LPGA events.