MARLIN, Texas — The Marlin Chamber of Commerce held its 111th annual Chamber awards Thursday evening, hosting a guest of honor who has made an impact in the community and across the nation.
His name is Curtis Modkins.
Over the years, the former Marlin football star from the Class of 1989 has evolved into an accomplished NFL coach. Modkins credits Marlin as the place that taught him the lessons he needed to thrive in his career.
"I got everything I needed from this place and the people from this place," Modkins said to 6 News.
He spoke words of inspiration and wisdom to a crowd of 200 people with the goal to reach the youth in the audience.
Modkins said, "The most precious commodity Marlin has is its young people."
As someone with something to prove to himself and his doubters, he challenged himself and grew into the strong man he is today. Now he's sharing what he learned from his past experiences to help others.
"I'm going to give them the blueprint I follow. And I'm going to encourage them to do hard stuff, encourage them to be good people and tell my story," Modkins said.
He told the crowd about a teacher he met at a signing at Texas Christian University who said that he would not make it past Labor Day. Trusting in himself and his purple T-shirt that read, 'Lord, Keep Me Going', he proved that person wrong, accomplishment by accomplishment.
Modkins succeeded by having the third most rushing yards in TCU history and going on to coach for several NFL teams since 2008. However, he said his biggest accomplishment is his family, especially his kids.
"My kids are college graduates. My son's a coach in the NFL. My daughter was a four year basketball starter at Kent State," he said.
Modkins kids weren't the only people cheering for him at the event. His wife and Chamber Assistant Secretary Candace Grams came up with the idea to bring Modkins from his current job with the Minnesota Vikings to Marlin.
"I hadn't been home in a while. It feels really good to be home," Modkins said with thanks in his heart.
He said he's noticed how the football program and school district in Marlin have made great strides of improvement in recent years. Marlin High School recently was announced as the Texas High School Football Hall of Fame's 2022 Gordon Wood Winner.
Modkins said, "There are a lot of good people here in Marlin, a lot of proud people. I'm proud of what they've done to get it where it's at. We're on our way to being the great school, the great community that we should be and that we always have been."
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