George “One Play” McAfee served his country in the Navy from 1942 to 1945. Had his career not been interrupted by World War II and a season-ending knee injury, the records he would have set as a professional football player would have only augmented an already phenomenal career.

As it was, during his seven years playing both offense and defense with the Chicago Bears and, before that, Duke University, the man Red Grange called “the most dangerous man with the football in the game” produced careers worthy of the college and pro halls of fame.1 That a hero on the battlefield and gridiron would end his life not realizing he was drinking industrial-strength detergent, burning his lips, esophagus and lungs in the process, is a terrible legacy.

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