Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Roosevelt Grier (born July 14, 1932 in Brooklyn, New York and raised in Cuthbert, Georgia), is an American football player, actor, and Christian minister, better known as Rosey Grier. One of twelve children, Grier was named after U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and is cousin to actress Pam Grier, and was well known in the 1970s for being a "macho" sports figure who was enjoyed practicing needlepoint and macrame.
After attending Penn State University, Grier began his professional football career in 1955. He was a National Football League defensive lineman with the New York Giants from 1955 to 1962 and with the Los Angeles Rams from 1963 to 1966.
Grier rose to prominence as an All-Pro defensive tackle for the New York Giants in 1957, and was a member of the Los Angeles Rams' "Fearsome Foursome", considered by many the best defensive line in the history of the sport. A torn Achilles' tendon ended his football career in 1967.
He was serving as a bodyguard for his friend Robert Kennedy when he was assassinated in Los Angeles in 1968, and helped apprehend Kennedy's assassin Sirhan Sirhan. Grier and Olympic gold medalist Rafer Johnson subdued Sirhan Sirhan, with Grier jamming his thumb behind the trigger of the gun to prevent further shots from being fired.
Grier has appeared in a number of films and television shows. One of the first football stars to successfully transition to acting, Grier starred in a handful low-budget features, including The Thing with Two Heads (1972). He made about 70 television guest appearances, and became a regular cast member on the series Daniel Boone, Make Room for Granddaddy , and The White Shadow .
Grier has also written a number of books, and now travels the United States as an inspirational speaker, and is cofounder of American Neighborhood Enterprises -- an organization that works to help disadvantages city dwellers buy homes and receive vocational training.
Grier was ordained a Christian minister in 1983, and the next year he founded his nonprofit resource center for inner-city teens, developing prototypical spiritual and educational programs for disadvantaged youths.
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