Peyton Manning announced the “18 to 88” scholarship in memory of former Denver Broncos teammate Demaryius Thomas.
According to Broncos reporter Aric DiLalla, Manning unveiled the $10,000 fund at the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame banquet. It will go to a local high school athlete every year.
Thomas, who spent his first eight-and-a half seasons in Denver, died in his home last December. Manning and his wife, Ashley, also endowed a scholarship at Georgia Tech — Thomas’ alma mater — in the wide receiver’s honor.
“Demaryius Thomas was an incredibly talented and unselfish teammate, but more importantly, he was a special person and friend,” Manning said. “My family and I miss him dearly, and we wanted to honor D.T.’s memory by partnering the PeyBack Foundation with Georgia Tech to establish the Demaryius A. Thomas Scholarship Endowment.
“An important part of Demaryius’ legacy was the way he inspired the next generation to pursue their dreams with the same perseverance and determination that defined him. Through this scholarship to Georgia Tech, Demaryius will have a lasting impact on deserving youth from his hometown area who can follow in his footsteps and accomplish great things in life.”
Thomas tallied 41 receiving touchdowns in Manning’s four seasons with the Broncos. He caught 14 of Manning’s record-setting 55 touchdown passes in 2014, and Denver concluded the 2015 campaign with a Super Bowl championship.
Manning continues to honor Thomas’ legacy by giving back to the communities he touched before passing away at age 33.