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Eddie Macon
Born (1927-03-07)March 7, 1927
Stockton, California
Died April 19, 2017(2017-04-19) (aged 90)
Honors Stockton Hall of Fame
Pacific Hall of Fame
AFL All-Pro (1960)
Pacific #41 Retired

Edwin Donald Macon[1] (March 7, 1927 – April 19, 2017) was a professional American football halfback.

Early life[]

Macon was a track star at Edison High School. He was drafted into the United States Army during World War II in 1945, and was stationed for seven months at Yokohama, Japan after the war's conclusion. Upon returning to the United States, he joined the San Joaquin Delta College track team, before transferring to Pacific. Macon was convinced by Pacific coach Larry Siemering to join the school's football team, becoming the first black Tigers player. In three seasons with the Tigers, Macon scored 34 touchdowns, and went 24–8–1.[2]

Professional career[]

Macon was drafted in the second round (twentieth selection) of the 1952 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears and became the first African-American player on the team; he spent two years as a halfback and return specialist.[3] He was the second African-American to be drafted by the Bears; the first, George Taliaferro, was drafted by them in 1949, but chose to play in the All-America Football Conference.[3] With the Bears, Macon rushed for 324 yards and two touchdowns on 70 attempts while catching 14 passes for 49 yards and two touchdowns. On 22 kick returns, he averaged 30.5 yards per return and 5.9 yards on 24 punt returns.[3] He left the Bears in 1954 to play for the Calgary Stampeders of the Canadian Football League.[4] Bears coach and owner George Halas was not pleased about his departure, blackballing Macon and suing him for $100,000. As a result, the Bears refused to acknowledge Macon being on the team.[5] After being out of football for two years, which he spent as a longshoreman, Macon joined the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1957 before leaving in 1959 to resume his longshoreman career, but later joined the Oakland Raiders of the American Football League in 1960. With the Raiders, Macon was converted to defensive back, and was tied for second in the league with nine interceptions, which earned him All-Pro honors.[2]

Personal life[]

Macon and his wife Jessie, have four daughters as well as a son who predeceased them. He and his wife married in 1945 and resided in a senior living residence as of 2013. Upon retiring, Macon worked for 40 years as a longshoreman. He died on April 19, 2017 at the age of 90.

References[]

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