2013 Ring of Honor inductee, Marty Lyons, a former All-American defensive tackle from the University of Alabama, played the entirety of his 12-year NFL career with the New York Jets as a member of the feared “Sack Exchange.” In 1984 Marty Lyons was named the National Football League’s Man of the Year and in 1990 the New York Jets renamed their Outstanding Community Service Award the Marty Lyons Award because of Lyons’ commitment to the community. Early in his career, Lyons befriended and became a surrogate father to a 3-year-old boy suffering from an advanced illness. Three years later, in the spring of 1982, the youngster’s death coincided with the sudden death of Lyons’ father and the birth of his first child, a healthy son. These experiences profoundly affected Lyons’ outlook on life, fame and philanthropy. With the encouragement and the assistance of his family and friends, he established a foundation dedicated to granting wishes of seriously ill children. Incorporated in 1982, the Marty Lyons Foundation helps to lift children’s spirits and lets the magic of hope lead their thoughts and dreams for the future. More than 7,100 wishes have been granted to children suffering from life threatening or terminal illnesses since the foundation’s inception. The Marty Lyons Award is presented each year to a New York Jets player that gives from the heart through charity and community involvement (as voted by Jets staff).