Darius Leonard donates backpacks to Lake View Elementary School students

Published: Aug. 17, 2021 at 7:01 PM EDT
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LAKE VIEW, SC (WMBF) - No matter where his NFL career takes him, Darius Leonard will never forget where he comes from. The Lake View community molded him into the man he is today. On Tuesday, Leonard gave elementary school students in his hometown something to smile about.

‘The Maniac’ donated backpacks filled with school supplies to 150 students at Lake View Elementary School. Leonard couldn’t be in attendance for the event, however he made sure to send the kids a special message.

It’s just one of the many ways that Leonard gives back to his community. He also donates meals during Thanksgiving and hosts a youth football camp in the summer. His manager Raymond Foxworth says Leonard does it because he knows exactly what it’s like to be in these kids’ shoes.

“It means everything. He grew up here and he knows exactly how tough it is for all the kids,” Foxworth said. “He was once one of those kids and he talks about that on every interview. For him to do the smallest things like getting backpacks and supplies that’s big for him. It’s just as big as the thanksgiving giveaway and even the camps. Everything that he does is for Lake View at the end of the day. And not just Lake View, it’s for Dillon County and the whole Pee Dee area. He wants to do it for everybody. He knows how hard it is so he’s willing to give back.”

Leonard is entering his fourth season with the Indianapolis Colts. He recently signed a five-year $99.25 million contract extension with the team, making him the highest-paid inside linebacker in the NFL.

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