Bryant Young delivers emotional speech to late son as Class of 2022 inducted into NFL Hall of Fame

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The NFL took time to honor some of the best to ever play the game with its annual Hall of Fame enshrinement ceremony Saturday afternoon. 

The day is generally reserved for memories of some of the best to ever play the game and make sure they are never forgotten, however one member of this year’s class wanted to make sure someone else was remembered. 

Former San Francisco 49ers defensive lineman Bryant Young took time to dedicate his speech to his late son Colby Young, who died from pediatric cancer at the age of 15 back in 2016.

Bryant Young fights tears while speaking about his late son Colby during his induction speech

Young smiles while  placing his sunglasses on his Hall of Fame bust in front of the cameras

Young smiles while  placing his sunglasses on his Hall of Fame bust in front of the cameras

Young poses with his family and HOF bust after he had dedicated his speech to his late son

Young poses with his family and HOF bust after he had dedicated his speech to his late son

‘From my pain, I found purpose,’ he said at the end of his 10-minute speech. ‘Letting someone grab my hand is as important as reaching for theirs. In an isolated world, personal connections matter more than ever.

‘I keep my gaze on Christ and pour myself into good works, including the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation. I’ve learned to trust God’s plan and timing and not mine.

‘In this, my 10th year of eligibility, I enter the Hall as a member of the Class of 2022. Twenty-two was Colby’s favorite number.’

Young played his entire 14-year career with the 49ers and was pivotal member of the team that won San Francisco its fifth Super Bowl.

He also made the NFL All-Decade Team for the 1990s and is the 49ers’ all-time sacks leader with 89.5.

Young was, of course, not the only player inducted to the Hall of Fame Saturday as the class also featured Richard Seymour, Tony Boselli, LeRoy Butler, Cliff Branch, Sam Mills, and Dick Vermeil.

Richard Seymour and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft pose next to Seymour's bust

Richard Seymour and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft pose next to Seymour’s bust

Dick Vermeil smiles and points to his bust after it is revealed on stage during the ceremony

Dick Vermeil smiles and points to his bust after it is revealed on stage during the ceremony

Seymour, who is also the youngest member of the class, is the name most younger fans will remember having most recently played in 2012 for the then-Oakland Raiders. During his career Seymour won three Super Bowls with the New England Patriots among a bevy of other accolades. 

Dick Vermeil did not play in the NFL, but is the only member of the class to have served as a coach having been the head coach for the Eagles, Rams and Chiefs throughout a long career that also included success in the college game with UCLA.

Art McNally is the other of the eight inductees who was not an  NFL player. McNally spent nine years on the field as an official before becoming the league’s Supervisor of Officials in 1968.

Shannon O'Hara (left) and Conner O'Hara (right) pose with grandfather Art McNally's bust

Shannon O’Hara (left) and Conner O’Hara (right) pose with grandfather Art McNally’s bust

He held that role until 1991, remaining involved in the game until 2015 and becoming known as the ‘Father of Modern Officiating.’

The 97-year-old McNally is the first on-field official to be inducted into the Hall. He was not in attendance for the event however, but honors were accepted by his grandchildren.

Family members also accepted honors on behalf of the aforementioned Branch and Mills who passed away in 2019 and 2005, respectively.

Branch won three Super Bowl rings as a wide receiver and earned All-Pro three times during his time with the then-Oakland Raiders. He finished his career with 501 receptions for 8,685 yards and 67 touchdowns.

Mills spent nine years playing linebacker for the Carolina Panthers, amassing over 1,200 tackles and 20 sacks in his career.

Melanie Mills, widow of former NFL player Sam Mills poses with his bust during the ceremony

Melanie Mills, widow of former NFL player Sam Mills poses with his bust during the ceremony

Elaine Anderson, Cliff Branch's sister, poses with a bust of the former NFL player on Saturday

Elaine Anderson, Cliff Branch’s sister, poses with a bust of the former NFL player on Saturday

For the other players present for the ceremony, Tony Boselli became the first player drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars to be inducted to the Hall of Fame. 

Boselli played left tackle for the Jaguars and was elected to five Pro Bowls before his career was cut short due to injuries.

Butler became the 28th member of the Packers to be inducted to the Hall of Fame. During his playing days he proved to be one of the most versatile safeties in the game recording 38 passes while adding 20½ sacks, one of only four players with at least 35 interceptions and 20 sacks dating back to when the NFL made sacks an official statistic in 1982.

Butler is the final first-team all-decade player from the 1950s, ’60s, ’70s, ’80s and ’90s to enter the Hall. He was named first-team All-Pro four times (1993, ’96, ’97 and ’98) and played in four Pro Bowls.

Leroy Butler poses with his bust during NFL Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Canton

Leroy Butler poses with his bust during NFL Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Canton

Tony Boselli became the first player drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars to be inducted

Tony Boselli became the first player drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars to be inducted 

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