Saturday, July 4, 2015

Cunningham: 'I was a lonely soul'

Randall Cunningham said he felt "empty and unfulfilled" in his early years in Philadelphia before he found his wife. What's life like for him now as a pastor in Nevada? A recent article caught up with him.

Cunningham: 'I was a lonely soul'

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Good piece by Mark Anderson in the Las Vegas Review-Journal about Randall Cunningham and the life he's leading after football.

Cunningham is a pastor at the Protestant interdenominational church in Henderson, Nev. The article examines why he decided to go down this path after his football career ended. Cunningham also reflects on his time with the Eagles:

Despite all the adulation, he also felt alone in many ways, a feeling that haunted him for years. After cancer took his mother in November 1981, and a heart attack claimed his father a year later, Cunningham became afraid to get too close to people.

Later in Philadelphia, some friends backed away after Cunningham declared he had become a Christian. What really ate at Cunningham more than losing friendships was how much he yearned to share his life with someone.

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"I was a lonely soul. I needed a wife," he said. "I felt empty and unfulfilled."

Anderson explains that Cunningham met his eventual wife, Felicity de Jager, in 1990.

He also talked about how his life on the field prepared him for what he's doing now.

"If I'd never played football, I don't think I'd be the leader I am today. If I hadn't gone through the hardships I've gone through and been rebuked and hated by the Giant fans and the Cowboy fans and the Raider fans,'' he said, laughing, ''I would not have been nourished in the area of maturity."

The Eagles inducted Cunningham into their Ring of Honor last year.

Anyway, there's a lot more to it than the above passages. Click here to check out the full article.

Below are YouTube highlights from Cunningham's career here, and above is a photo gallery from his playing days.


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Sheil Kapadia is in his fifth season writing about the Eagles and the NFL for philly.com. His earliest memories as a sports fan include several trips to Veterans Stadium with his Dad. He's not a beat writer or an Insider, but is here to discuss the NFL 365 days a year. E-mail him at skapadia@philly.com or by clicking here

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