*Ex-New York Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress, a week after his release from prison on gun charges, pledged on Monday to preach against gun violence to America’s children.
The 2008 Super Bowl star said the volunteer effort was the right move after serving nearly all of his 20-month sentence for weapons possession. In November, 2008, Burress carried a gun into a Manhattan nightclub and accidentally shot himself in the leg.
“I paid a tremendous price for a bad decision,” said Burress at a news conference organized by his partners in the effort, the National Urban League and the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence.
“All those 20 months and all those days I was saying to myself how can I take the next step and how can people learn from what happened to me,” he said.
Burress, 33, who hopes to return to play in the National Football League, said he plans to speak with audiences around the country and will be mentored by former NFL coach Tony Dungy, who has helped disgraced football star Michael Vick resurrect his reputation.
His particular focus will be convincing children to stay in school and stay away from guns because “kids will listen to a person like myself,” Burress said.
“I know that I won’t be able to save everybody. But if I can just help a child to think about the decision of carrying a firearm or making the decision not to carry one out of the home that… saves lives in itself,” Burress said.