"In the Beginning, all America was Virginia."
William Byrd II
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The Story of Virginia

A Chat with Willie and Woody, by Paul Woody and Willie Lanier


On August 10, 2016, veteran Richmond Times-Dispatch sports columnist Paul Woody, and Hall of Famer Willie Lanier gave a Banner Lecture at the Virginia Historical Society.Virginia native Willie Lanier is known as one of professional football’s greatest defensive players of all time. A 1963 graduate of Maggie L. Walker High School, he was the first African American to play middle linebacker in professional football when he was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs in 1967. During his ten season career with the Chiefs, he helped lead the team to victory in Super Bowl IV, won the NFL Man of the Year award in 1972, was a six time Pro Bowler, and was enshrined in the NFL Hall of Fame in 1986. Join us for a casual conversation as veteran Richmond Times-Dispatch sports columnist Paul Woody chats with Willie Lanier at the Virginia Historical Society.