For the second straight summer, Rueben Randle will return to Bastrop on June 14 to host a youth football camp.
New York Giants' wide receiver Rueben Randle returned to Bastrop on Saturday afternoon to help launch the Rueben Randle L.I.F.E. Foundation.
Following the welcome address, City of Bastrop Mayor Arthur Jones presented the former Bastrop High Parade All-American and LSU All-SEC wide receiver with a key to the city.
Rueben's brothers, Deatrick Mitchell and Aaron Randle, presented a brief slide show, “Who is Rueben Randle?”
During a Q & A session with the audience, Rueben Randle fielded a wide range of inquiries ranging from his choice of a mother's day gift to his thoughts on playing with former LSU teammate Odell Beckham.
Rueben opted to keep his Mother's Day gift for Troye Randle a surprise.
On the Giants' selection of Beckham in the first round, Randle said: “It's always good to have another playmaker. I'm going to try to pass the things down to him that I have learned the past two years, so he doesn't make the same mistakes I've made.”
Randle says he is excited about the new foundation.
“I want to be able to make a difference and give back to this community,” Randle said. “I want the kids to understand that they can be successful in whatever they choose to do, athletically as well as academically.”
Rueben's sister, Erica J. Randle, the foundation's president, informed the audience of the organization's goals.
“Our purpose is to unite and form an alliance with Morehouse Parish and surrounding areas in order to seek effective solutions to common concerns that have become a crisis in our communities,” Erica Randle said. “These crises include high dropout rate, truancy, juvenile crimes, abject poverty, illiteracy, health issues — mainly obesity and mental illness — teenage and adult violence and marginal parental involvement.”
Erica Randle says the the foundation is in the process of implementing four major programs, starting with the Rueben Randle Football Camp on June 14 at Bastrop High. This will mark the second year of the camp.
Other programs include co-sponsoring a reading program with the Parents and Community Alliance of Morehouse Parish, sponsoring a yearly scholarship program and a “Give Back” program to assist needy families with educational opportunities by providing supplies, materials and school uniforms.
With Rueben spending the majority of his time in New York, he will rely on his parents (Emmett and Troye Randle), family members and the organization's board of directors to do the leg work locally.
Board of directors include vice-president Cassandra Peoples, associate professor of social work and director of education at Grambling State University; executive director the Rev. Michael Callahan, pastor of First Baptist Amulet in Natchitoches; education advisor Vera Tucker, and secretary/treasurer Troye Randle.
Representatives for the foundation include Emmett Randle, Aaron Randle, Maryam Randle, Marvin and Tashica Hunter, Deatrick and Shaun Mitchell, Keith Houston and Mr. and Mrs. Vince Taylor.