GALVESTON

The weather was warm, but it didn’t stop the children’s faces from lighting up when they got to meet their hometown hero.

Mike Evans returned to Galveston to host his fourth annual football camp. Children between the ages of 8 and 14 years old participated in Evans’ camp where they got to learn a variety of skills.

The camp had 150 children sign up, and the camp started out with five drills while rotating campers to each drill.

Many volunteers and coaches came out to help and support the wide receiver’s camp. Ball High head football coach Kimble Anders said they had a group of coaches to help demonstrate the game’s fundamentals.

“It’s a wonderful feeling to see him come in as a lanky young boy and grow up into a fine young man,” Anders said. “It’s definitely a warm feeling inside to see him give back.”

While Evans was having fun signing autographs, the participants got warmed up. Anders said people could see the children’s faces being excited to see the wide receiver star and playing the game they love.

“Mostly new skills to get passed people,” said Jaden Hernandez, 13, is a skill he wanted to learn from Evans.

Going out and just playing football is what camper Damarion Britton, 12, said he was looking forward to the most.

Evans wants to be an example for the youth. Casey Hampton was Evans’ example growing up. Hampton used to host a football camp, and Evans always went to his camp and watched how Hampton conducted himself.

“Everything he said, even if he didn’t say much, I would always take it,” Evans said.

The star Buccaneer wide receiver also wants to teach the children to work as hard as they can.

“If they’re disciplined, if they take care of their school work, then everything will work out for them,” Evans said. “That dreams can come true.”

Giving back to the community is valuable to Evans because he said it’s the community who raised him. Galveston County is extremely dear to his heart.

“Without this community, I don’t feel like I’d be the man I am today,” Evans said.

Ultimately, what drives the Buccaneer wide receiver is his faith, family and being the best he can be. Evans said he is blessed to be the type of player he is, so he can help his Tampa Bay teammates reach the playoffs and eventually become Super Bowl champions.

“I love coming off a good year and showing the kids like, ‘Yo, you can do whatever you want to do,’” Evans said. “Just put your mind to it and you just listen and be disciplined along the way.”

Evans said the community supports him, and this support motivates him to be the best the person on and off the field.

“I feel like people that are from Galveston are bred a little different,” Evans said. “We’re very tight knit.”

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(2) comments

Bailey Jones

You can see the joy and respect on these kids' faces. Role models, and giving back, are so important to communities.

Angelica Rendon

Mike Evans is truly a class act. I have heard reports that he donates his earnings for signing his sports memorabilia to the Boys and Girls Club of Galveston. In college he and Johnny Football played together and their childhood could not be more different. Johnny is from a wealthy family and was afforded every opportunity to succeed. Mike however, had to overcome adversity and work hard for his opportunities. We know the directions each of their career paths have taken. I don't know this young man personally but his story resonates with me and I am proud he is from my home town. He is a true example of what hard work, dedication, and doing the right thing can do for him and for his community. The Galveston County children are very fortunate that he cares and he shows up. My son was at the camp. Each participant came home with a swag bag. My son got Mike's autograph on his camp shirt. The camp ended with all of the participants getting fed lunch. This young man is a true Galveston Hero.

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