Former Bronco addresses students, community
GYPSUM – We know Reggie Rivers, the former Denver Bronco, can run. And we know he can catch. Last week, we learned more about Rivers. He’s more than just a former pro jock. Rivers, who graduated with a degree in newspaper journalism before beginning his professional football career, currently writes and editorial for the Denver Post on Fridays, hosts a radio show and is a great motivational speaker for kids and adults. Students in Gypsum got a visit from Rivers last Friday after an invitation from Gypsum Elementary teacher Kim Chambers.Rivers started his day by speaking to members of the Eagle Valley Chamber of Commerce, then went to Gypsum Elementary, where he talked about the importance of the writing process to fourth and fifth graders. After that, Rivers headed next door to Eagle Valley High School to speak to classes.
With the fourth and fifth graders, Rivers emphasized the importance of reading and writing. Rivers said he has about 1,500 books in his personal library and has actually read about 90 percent of them. “My favorite thing is reading, second is writing and third is football,” said Rivers. Rivers explained the importance of good communication skills and daily reading and writing. “It’s important to read and write everyday. When I played football, I would catch 100 passes a day, everyday. Practice is important with reading and writing too,” said Rivers. Rivers’ mother was a librarian as he was growing up.
When prompted with questions by students, Rivers said that his favorite author is Stephen King and his favorite series is the Harry Potter Series. His favorite children’s author is Dr. Seuss and his genre of preference is criminal mystery.Kids couldn’t take their eyes off of Rivers, who was engaging and entertaining. Fifth grader Katie Lundberg said Rivers really knew what he was talking about. “I thought he was awesome,” Lundberg said. Most students agreed. Fourth grader Jordan Hudspeth said the most important thing Rivers talked about was learning how to communicate. “He was really funny,” Hudspeth says.
Although fifth grader Jeremiah Doyle says he isn’t a big football fan, he learned from Rivers that writing is very important. He says Rivers’ presentation was “pretty cool.” His mom, Shelly, attended all of the sessions and says kids were laughing and asking great questions of the ex-football star. “(Rivers) was sensational with the kids. He has a great connection with that age group,” Shelly Doyle says. Fifth grade teacher Rich Deane agrees. “He was very articulate. He had (the students) eating out of his hand,” Deane says.For more information on programs at Gypsum Elementary, call 328-8940.