Devin Hester’s ‘impossible’ Hall of Fame dream comes true


LAS VEGAS — After knocking on the Hall of Fame’s door for three years, they finally let Devin Hester in.

“I’m just blessed and honored to be the first returner,” Hester said. “It’s hard to say who’s the number one quarterback, the number two running back, the number one defensive player – but, in the situation I’m in right now I can honestly say that I am the number one returner of all-time.”

As hard as Hester and Bears fans were knocking, it was actually a horn that alerted him that Canton was calling last week.

Here’s how it all played out, in Hester’s words:

“Got a call from Edgerrin James about a week prior. We both have old school cars. He stays about ten minutes from me. He called me and was like, ‘Hey D! Want to go riding?’ I was like, ‘Sure, what day you want to ride?’ He goes, ‘How about Thursday?’ I was like, ‘Fine.’ He was like, ‘We’re going to go riding around 9:30.’ I’m like, ‘Ok, cool. At night time?’ He’s like, ‘No. 9:30 in the morning.’ I was like, ‘Who goes riding in their old schools early in the morning?’ You know I’ve got kids to take to school and stuff like that. He’s like, ‘Nah. As soon as you drop the kids off and everything, we’ll go riding.’

“I told my wife about it and she was like, ‘Ok. Cool.’ All of a sudden, the day we were supposed to go riding, my kids are all in the house and they haven’t gone to school yet. I’m like, ‘why are the kids not going to school.’ She’s like, ‘Oh. They got dentist appointments.’ The kids are down the hall watching TV.

“She started getting dressed. I’m like, ‘I know you’re dropping off the kids but you’re putting on makeup and stuff. Who you going to see at the dentist appointment.

“All of a sudden, I hear a horn bump bump at the front door. So, I didn’t get a knock. I got a horn. I go to look at the front door and I see the camera crews and everybody coming to the front door. I see his gold jacket on. That’s when I knew it was time.”

As excited as he was, Hester was disappointed not to be a first or second ballot Hall of Famer. But, his younger self would have never believed it.

“This is a wild dream that I never imagined. This is bigger than everything. This is not only a dream, this is something that I felt as a kid was impossible. I never thought about me being in the Hall of Fame. That was just too much of a escalating out of the picture. It’s like hitting the lotto.

“To be able to have this award is a cherry on top.”


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