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John DeShazier: Black and Gold Classic getting better with time

Saints great Stan Brock said event should raise $50,000 for military foundations

After the fifth annual Black and Gold Classic, former New Orleans Saints great Stan Brock said the event only is getting better with time.

The Classic – a fishing rodeo and shooting event originated by Brock, with the proceeds being donated to the Green Beret and Navy Seals foundations – again was held in Grand Isle this past weekend and featured the presence of several former and current Saints.

This year, Brock said, he anticipates the donation to the foundations to eclipse $50,000.

Brock was a Saint from 1980-92. His inspiration for the Black and Gold Classic came from being the offensive line coach and then the head football coach at Army. In his roles there, Brock saw many of his players leave and go to war, and some became Special Forces.

A visit to one of his linemen, who lost a leg and had the other badly damaged, at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Washington, D.C.,  provided the impetus for finding a way to give back to the two foundations.

"The (Classic) went great, I think all aspects of it went very, very well," Brock said. "I think it was very successful, and I think a lot of it is due to the Green Beret and the Navy Seals actually having a presence there, as well as all the current and former football players.

"There were probably four Green Berets, four Navy Seals and an additional four or five current or retired military."

While the fishing rodeo and shooting event bring out the competitive sides of the participants – Brock said about 220 people participated on the corporate side, and another two dozen people participated as individuals – the purpose never is forgotten.

"More than anything, it's an opportunity to raise money," Brock said. "The concert (last Friday) with Category 6, we had some raffles, also a motorcycle group – BACA, Bikers Against Child Abuse – we had about 125 of them participate in our outdoor concert, so that made it very successful."

So successful that Brock said he anticipates being in Grand Isle again next year and, likely, for the immediate future.

"We're definitely going back to Grand Isle, whether we add an event somewhere else," he said. "But we'll always be in Grand Isle. That's too much like family for me not to go down there. But we may add some events elsewhere."

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