September 15 ~  Dream Big Dreams Heart of a Champion

"In the end, being first and achieving all your goals doesn't happen all the time. Still, I think you should dream big dreams, as long as you're willing to work toward those dreams." ~ Dan Marino

Dan Marino

Miami Dolphin quarterback Daniel Constantine Marino, Jr. (1961-) was born on this day in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The talented athlete always dreamed of playing football even when he was offered a $30,000 baseball contract with the Kansas City Royals while still in high school.

He also had other aspirations...

"I not only wanted to play football, I wanted an education," he explained about turning down the offer.

An All-American quarterback for University of Pittsburgh, Marino was drafted by the Dolphins in 1983 and given the awesome task of taking over for legendary Hall of Famer Bob Griese.

"Picking Marino was one of the easiest decisions I've ever had to make," admitted coach Don Shula.

Marino was known for his strong arm, lightning-quick release, pinpoint accuracy, and skill in throwing from the pocket. While the Miami Dolphins never won a Super Bowl with Marino, he led the NFL in touchdown passes (420), yardage (61,361), completions (4,967), and attempts (8,358) when he retired in 2000 after 17 seasons.

Inspired by the special needs of his autistic son, Marino established The Dan Marino Foundation in 1992 to help children with chronic illnesses and development disabilities.

"My father always taught me to appreciate what you're fortunate to have and give back to those who need it," Marino said. "No part of our society is more important than the children, especially the ones who need our help."

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celebrate life! Dream big and work toward your dreams.