BYU's Max Hall Shares Rebuttal To Make A Wish Board Member After Degrading His Addiction History
Max shares his reply to Digital Marketing CEO who made a regrettable decision to wear a tasteless shirt portraying Max's mug shot from a drug incident years ago. Challenges him to match the donation to Make A Wish to addiction recovery efforts.
Much has transpired over the past few days, and I hope when this is all said and done, we can learn from this experience. Who I am today, is not who I was in my playing days. Today, I write this letter as a husband, a father, a coach, a friend, and a grateful recovering addict.
You are aware after my career; my life played out on the big screen; there was no hiding or covering up the fact that. I was arrested for shoplifting while I was under the influence of drugs. Can you imagine making a mistake so big that your face was plastered all over the newspaper and television and internet? I believed at that moment all my accomplishments, relationships, and future were over, and I would forever be known as a drug addict.
I was officially at my rock bottom. I needed help. A coach of mine saw the news and reached out to me. My coaches and players rallied around me and helped me secure a facility in Utah where I could heal from my biggest battle. Understand that stopping the use of drugs and alcohol was the easy part. Recovery, complete recovery, was the most brutal battle I have ever fought. Playing in front of 63,000 fans was easy compared to fixing my life. Imagine going from an elite quarterback to sitting in handcuffs in the back of a police car, believing you have destroyed your family dynamics. I promise you; this is very difficult, and for this reason alone, most fear recovery. My recovery journey was long, public, and demanding. I want you to understand that recovering out loud takes courage.
Wearing that shirt to the game did not demonstrate courage. In reality, it showed your ignorance about addiction. My family did not find it funny or rivalry-worthy. It was an outward demonstration of a lack of enlightenment towards those in recovery. My wife and son were at the game on Saturday, and I am thankful they did not see you. I understand gestures in good fun, yet you took being an antagonist to a very negative place. As A Board member of the Make-A-Wish Foundation, I want to believe you know better. Mocking anyone for mistakes, addiction, mental health issues, and so on should be at the forefront of your mind.
From me to you, I believe you crossed a line. You have brought a lot of attention to your shirt, and I find it interesting that you have nine companies selling the shirt online. I won't ask you to remove the shirts or stop making them, yet please understand it directly reflects your character.
After your shirt went public via Twitter, Garrett McClintock, Host of the BYU show, "Give Em Hell," donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. In the end, you indicated that you wanted to match all monies entering the non-profit. That pot is growing and will continue to grow. That is a fantastic gesture, and thank you for matching that. I just looked, and it is now up too: $23,000.
I was hoping you could help me understand your justification as this money benefits you and goes directly into the organization you promote. I propose you do something a little more challenging.
I challenge you to step out of your comfort zone and match the funds you're donating to Make-A-Wish and donate that same amount to The Agents of Recovery podcast, through the 501c3 Addict II Athlete. The podcast helps support men like you and me. Weekly, I share the microphone with recovering addict and retired undercover police officer, Brock Bevell and recovering addict and therapist Blu Robinson.
If you genuinely want to make things right and your actions are authentic, put your money and time behind them. Your contribution will help us reach thousands of people who have also found themself caught in the grip of addiction. You may be unaware that we lose 255 people to drug addiction and overdose every day, so that shirt demonstrates just how disconnected the population truly is about an epidemic killing 93,331 people alone last year.
May I also extend the offer to you directly, if you want to learn more about addiction recovery? Brock, Blu, and I want to personally work with you to see a different side of the families and loved ones of addicts in the trenches. Chances are, you know someone who has been affected by addiction or who is currently struggling with addiction because that's how prevalent it truly is.
Interested to hear your response,
Agent of Recovery