FORMER DENVER BRONCO AND STEELERS GREAT FINALLY GETS TO TELL HIS STORY
Emporia, Kansas– Football fans, and especially those who are fond of the early days of professional football, will be interested in a new book hitting the shelves this week nation-wide. Entitled What Have You Done Now, Eugene? The Story of Gene Mingo #21, the memoir relates the roller-coaster life and career of America’s first African-American place kicker and holder of many Denver Bronco records that have not been broken in over fifty years.
The life story of Gene Mingo was co-authored by Gene Mingo and Glen and Carol Strickland, who have been friends with Mingo since the 1970s when they lived in Denver and developed a close friendship with Gene and his wife Sally. They have stayed close and decided that Gene’s story is one of inspiration, success, and frustration as he fought his way through the beginnings of the American Football League after dropping out of high school and facing many personal tragedies while growing up in Akron, Ohio.
The Stricklands agreed that they wanted to help Mingo tell his story and started gathering information, doing interviews, collecting photos, and writing the narrative almost three years ago. “It took longer than we ever imagined because of the research that was required. We wanted to make this a book that would pay tribute to this great man but that would also tell the true story of someone who has never received the acclaim that he so richly deserves,” explains Glen Strickland. Gene shared many stories that were very personal to him. “I think we asked some tough questions, especially when we were writing about his downfall with drugs and his arrest. He was very open and honest with us, and we tried to put his words into a running narrative that will engage readers of all ages,” adds Carol Strickland.
Gene Mingo observes, “It’s great to see my story in print after all these years. I hope that my life can be an inspiration to some of today’s young people. It would be great if they could learn from my mistakes rather than from their own.”
The book can currently be ordered online from Amazon or Barnes and Noble, as well as from the publisher IUniverse. It is available in soft cover as well as hard cover. Book signings will be scheduled in various Kansas and Colorado cities in the next few months. The website for the book is http://www.whathaveyoudonenoweugene.com/