DeMarcus Ware had a frightening accident on the field in 2009. He severely sprained his neck after slamming headfirst into a lineman. He was immobilized. After a few anxious moments, he was placed on a stretcher and carted off the field. At the time, it was unknown if there would be long term damage.
"You're sitting out there on the field not knowing if your career is over or if you'll be playing football again," he remembered. "So for a brief moment, not a lifetime, I knew what that person in a wheelchair or a person who is disabled felt."
Ultimately, the physical effects proved short-term. Ware was able to fully recover. But the mental effect was longer-lasting. In the above video, Ware explains why he's participating in the Wings for Life World Run -- a global race dedicated to funding spinal cord injury research.
"I'm really looking forward to it," Ware says, "It's not just a run for me. It's an opportunity to really shed light on spinal cord injury research."
On May 4, Ware will participate in the Wings For Life World Run in Denver, Colorado -- one of the three U.S. locations that include Sunrise, Florida, and Santa Clarita, California.
"For me to be able to get up and walk off the field and still play now," acknowledges Ware, "I have an opportunity to let them know there are people out there who care. That's why I'm running... letting them know we care."
For more info and to register, visit the official Wings For Life World Run website.