Video courtesy HPA
WAIMEA, Hawaii – Super Bowl Champion and Hawaii Preparatory Academy alumnus Max Unger made a surprise appearance at his Waimea high school last week, during a special assembly held in his honor.
HPA retired Ungerʻs number 77 during a ceremony held in the schoolʻs Castle Gym. HPA Athletic Director Stephen Perry and Tom Goodspeed, Unger’s football coach while at HPA who flew in from California for the event, presented the 2004 grad with the framed jersey.
After the event, the World Champion stuck around to answer questions and sign autographs.
Ungerʻs wife, Leah, and his parents, Keith and Cynda, also HPA graduates, attended the event.
The event was described in this media release:
The ceremony included introductions by HPA Athletic Director Stephen Perry and Headmaster Lindsay Barnes. Robert A. Fitzgerald, deputy director, County of Hawaii Department of Parks and Recreation and Ungerʻs former coach, representing Mayor Billy Kenoi, proclaimed April 2, 2014 “Max Unger Day in the County of Hawaii.”
Tom Goodspeed, former HPA head football coach and Ungerʻs high school coach, flew in from California for the event and spoke about the All-American, All-Pro, and Pro Bowl-er.
“Max, you are amazing. Youʻre a great ambassador for yourself, for HPA, and for your family,” said Goodspeed, who currently is the athletic director at Chadwick School in California.
Goodspeed and Perry presented the 2004 graduate with a framed #77 jersey and senior Keenan Greenbaum, who most recently wore #77, helped unveil a new banner hanging in the gym with the retired number.
Unger then took the podium and thanked the students, his family, and his alma mater for their support, particularly all of his former coaches and teachers.
“Iʻm very lucky,” said Unger. “Iʻve found something Iʻm passionate about; itʻs easy to find something youʻre passionate about. The hard part is putting in the hard work.” Hawaii Preparatory Academy media release