LITTLE SILVER: RBR HALL OF FAMER DIES

Greg Montgomery Jr., a former pro football punter, mental health advocate and 2014 inductee into the Red Bank Regional Hall of Fame, died August 23, according to an obituary published Thursday by the Grand Rapids Press in Michigan. He was 55 years old.

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RBR HONORS A HALL OF FAME FIVE

RBR HallOfFamePictured left to right are the April 25 induction luncheon for the 2014 Red Bank Regional Hall of Fame Inductees are Gregory Montgomery, Tiffaney Harris, honorary faculty inductee Dr. Seymour Siegler (seated), Dr. James Burden, and Brian Steckroth. Take it here for more on this year’s inductees and the Hall of Fame program.

Press release from Red Bank Regional High School

On Friday, April 25, the Red Bank Regional Education Foundation (RBREF) held its 2014 Distinguished Alumni Hall of Fame induction ceremony at Red Bank Regional High School. Entering the Hall of Fame this year were Greg Montgomery (Class of 1983), former NFL Football Player & Mental Health Advocate; Tiffaney M. Harris (Class of 1989), longtime Red Bank School District staff member and consummate community volunteer ; Dr. James Burden, D.M.D. (Class of 1991), mobile dentist to the elderly and infirm; and Brian Steckroth (Class of 1998), US Naval Academy Graduate, All-American and decorated Iraqi War Veteran. This year’s faculty honoree was Seymour Siegler, Ed.D. Red Bank High School biology teacher and guidance counselor (1957-1972), and co-founder of the Holocaust Museum at Brookdale Community College.

“The selection criterion for induction into the Hall of Fame involves being a role model for our current students,” Jacqueline Caruso Smith, committee chairperson for the event, informed the audience. “Whether someone attended our school 50 or 15 years ago or was a faculty member, they must have distinguished themselves by making some unique contribution in their careers and served their communities with honor and significant commitment.”

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RBR INDUCTS FIVE INTO ALUMNI HALL OF FAME

GregMontgomeryAn NFL football pro who became a high profile mental health advocate, a decorated Iraq War veteran, and a community volunteer known as “Red Bank’s Mom” are among the five distinguished alumni of Red Bank Regional High School who will be inducted into RBR’s Hall of Fame. The annual ceremony takes place this Friday, April 25, with a program that commences at 9 am in the school auditorium.

Entering the Hall of Fame for 2014 is Greg Montgomery, the Class of 1983 athlete who made the Bucs teams as both a baseball pitcher and a middle linebacker. A weightlifting back injury steered him to a specialty in punting and placekicking, and it was as a punter that he earned a scholarship to Penn State in ’83, transferring to Michigan State (alma mater of his quarterback father Greg Sr.) in ’84 and making the MSU All Time team before moving on to a nine-year NFL career (1988-97) with the Houston Oilers, Detroit Lions and the inaugural roster of the Baltimore Ravens.

While the All Pro specialist averaged 43.6 yards per punt during his seasons on the field (finishing his career with 22,831 total yards) his final year found him “in a professional camp, I was the best punter on the planet and had absolutely no confidence.” Suffering with depression and the ongoing intense pain from what turned out to be a broken vertebrae, the onetime Little Silver resident was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder — and in the years since his retirement from the gridiron has emerged as a leading advocate for the mental, physical and financial health of pro football veterans; blogging regularly on the topic, appearing on TV, and participating in a documentary film in between his services as an in-demand punting expert and consultant.

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