Blog Entry

Mark Ingram starts foundation to help children

Posted on: July 5, 2011 12:02 pm
Posted by Ryan Wilson

In April, the Saints selected running back Mark Ingram in the first round. Roughly two-and-a-half years before, Ingram's father, Mark Sr., who played 10 NFL seasons in '80s and '90s, was sentenced to seven years in prison for money laundering and fraud. (He ended up with two more years on his sentence after he failed to surrender in December 2008 and attempted to see his son play in the 2009 Sugar Bowl.)

And now his son has launched the Mark Ingram Foundation to help children who have parents in jail.

“The foundation is something that’s real important to me,” Ingram said, according to “It’s something I’m living, something I’m going through, something my sisters and I have experienced off and on throughout our lives. … It had its difficulties and its rough times,” he said. “But that’s why I’m here. I want to make the transition easier for the youth that had the same circumstances I had.”

It's an admirable undertaking for anyone, much less a 21-year-old. But Ingram wants kids to know that they can overcome their circumstances.

“There are so many negative statistics that come along with children or youth (who) have a parent or two parents that are incarcerated,” he said. “Just for me to get this foundation going, it’s real important to me. It’s something I want to be involved with the children all the time because it’s something I’m going through. ...I just want to let them know that although you have a parent who is gone or he or she is incarcerated, you can still be whatever you want to be, do whatever you want to do. You just have to put your mind to it.”

One of the most memorable moments from the April draft involved ESPN's Suzy Kolber reading Ingram an email from his father, just after the Saints selected him:

Kolber was criticized for it;'s Pete Prisco wondered if it was an ambush, and's Jeff Pearlman called it "it’s dishonest, dishonorable and wrong."

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Category: NFL
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Posted on: December 2, 2011 9:13 pm
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Posted on: November 30, 2011 4:03 pm
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Since: Nov 3, 2010
Posted on: July 6, 2011 12:39 pm

Mark Ingram starts foundation to help children

Thank you, Mr. Ingram, for setting a positive example. You can give hope and help to so many children, just by the way you present yourself. Many athletes really don't care how they're perceived, nor what laws they break. You've been able to overcome a lot and can be an inspiration to many more. Good luck with your foundation and NFL career.

Since: Feb 7, 2008
Posted on: July 5, 2011 3:25 pm

Mark Ingram starts foundation to help children

A young, positive role model. I'm a Raider fan, but I'll be pulling for this kid.

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