More than 1,000 people attended Reggie White's induction into the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame on Saturday night at the Lambeau Field Atrium, the largest crowd ever for the team's annual event.
White, the most honored defensive end in NFL history and one of the keys to the team's return to elite status in the mid-1990s, was presented for induction posthumously by former Philadelphia Eagles and Packers teammate Keith Jackson.
Jackson noted that despite White's signature pass-rushing moves, a player of his stature could never be defined by one play because of the sheer volume of impact plays he could make in a game. White will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, on Aug. 5.
"It's like Barry Sanders, one play doesn't define Barry Sanders," Jackson said. "Guys like that just made play after play. That's what made him so great. He came every play full speed, and he made great plays every game.
"You knew if you needed the game closed out, he was going to close it out and get the sack on the quarterback."
Jackson ended his speech by getting the crowd to give the memorable chant, "Reg-gie! Reg-gie!" one last time.
Several other Green Bay teammates, including Sean Jones, Santana Dotson, Gilbert Brown, Frank Winters, LeRoy Butler, Antonio Freeman, William Henderson and Edgar Bennett, also were on hand to honor White. Each player spoke about an indelible memory they had of the "Minister of Defense," many of them focusing on the helpful, caring individual White was off the field as well as the dominant player on it.
"He was the 'Minister of Defense,' but his first ministry was to minister to the guys," Jackson said.
"Reggie had a huge heart. Everybody knows his heart was tremendous. Over and over again he would go up when a guy had a bad game and pat him on the back. Reggie was a leader and he led by being a loving friend, and that echoed through the whole team."
The 2005 team awards were also handed out at the banquet, with Donald Driver being named 'Most Valuable Player,' Samkon Gado earning 'Offensive Rookie of the Year,' and Nick Collins getting 'Defensive Rookie of the Year.'
This year's FAN Hall of Fame honoree, Kathy Lazzaro of Milwaukee, also was inducted. Lazzaro is the eighth fan to be so honored.