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New inductee reflects on Gannon influences

Feb 24 • AlumKnights, Features • 1252

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I was recently inducted into the Gannon Hall of Fame, Class of 2016 for football. I was a student at Gannon from 1989-1995.

Being inducted into the Hall of Fame is a truly humbling experience and a great honor.

From the start of the day arriving at noon for photographs with other inductees and our families, it was a first-class event.

The afternoon consisted of fun-filled basketball games of the women and men Golden Knights.

During halftime of the men’s game each inductee was introduced at center court and photographed with President Keith Taylor, Ph.D., and Athletics Director Lisa McGuirk, another great experience.

Following the games everyone attended the induction dinner, which consisted of numerous excellent speakers who talked about all the good things going on at Gannon University.

Each inductee was then introduced and then gave a short speech about his or her time at Gannon.

My speech consisted of a thank you to my family, friends and teammates. I had the opportunity to single out my head coach at the time, Tom Herman, who was in attendance and whom I consider family.

Herman gave me guidance and support, and was a true mentor for me, which made my experience at Gannon just that much more fulfilling.

Next, I had the pleasure of sharing this induction with 20 of my teammates who are like brothers to me and were also in attendance.

While at Gannon we formed a brotherhood and bond that has continued for the past 20 plus years.

From start to conclusion, the induction was truly an impressive affair.
As I reflect back on my time at Gannon, I realize it made me the person I am today.

From the friends that I made to the faculty and administration that I learned from, they molded me into a well-rounded student-athlete.

This prepared me for my life after Gannon, which includes owning my own business, raising two children, volunteering, coaching and serving on the Millcreek school board for eight years.

I would like to thank Gannon University and especially Mark Gaeta for the honor and privilege of being in the Gannon Hall of Fame.

Editor’s note: Michael Palermo was a four-year starter as an offensive lineman for the Gannon football program from 1991-94. According to the Gannon athletics website, Palermo was a two-time All-Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference (ECAC) honoree as a junior and senior, and he was selected to play in the 1994 Snow Bowl, which was the NCAA Division II All-Star Game at that time.

He signed as a free agent with the New Orleans Saints of the NFL after he completed his career at Gannon and later played with the Rhein Fire of the World Football League (WFL) before retiring due to injury issues.

MICHAEL PALERMO, class of 1995
alum001@gannon.edu

 

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