WASHINGTON D.C. (KMSP) - Ex-Minnesota Viking great Alan Page was honored Friday by President Donald Trump with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
President Trump presented the nation’s highest civilian honor to a Minnesota legend Friday.
In a White House room where Presidents honor heroes, a Minnesota legend and NFL Hall-of-Famer is enshrined into the nation’s exclusive club of citizenship.
“He was tough, strong,” said President Donald Trump. “Minnesota’s Supreme Court justice, he became a Supreme Court justice, and he’s nervous with all of these U.S. Supreme Court justices. A very special man.”
That very special man left his mark on the gridiron with a career with the Vikings. When not on the field, he earned his law degree at the University of Minnesota.
In 1993, voters elected him to the State Supreme Court where he served for more than 20 years, but his lasting legacy, what earned him the Medal of Freedom, is the foundation he founded with his wife Diane Sims Page.
Over the years, it raised more than $15 million granting college scholarships to more than 7,000 students of color.
This fall, Diane lost her battle with cancer.
“Alan, we know that the goodness, grace and hope that Diane brought into our world will live on for many generations to come. She is looking down on you right now and she is so proud with love. She is so proud of you,” Trump said.
Page says the medal is about what he and Diane believed in: educational opportunity and equal justice for all.
“United States proudly recognizes Justice Page’s athletic accomplishments and life time of public service and philanthropy,” Trump said.
Justice page wore his purple bow tie to the ceremony which has become a symbol of the Page Education Foundation.
Among the thousands of promising students the pages sent to college on scholarships is Fox 9’s own Bisi Onile Ere.
Also receiving medals in a ceremony held in the White House’s East Room were; Miriam Adelson, a doctor and wife of casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, a Republican donor; Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch, who is retiring after more than 41 years in the U.S. Senate; and former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Roger Staubach.
Baseball great Babe Ruth, rock legend Elvis Presley, and Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia received posthumous awards.