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Gibbs and Fulton honor Army Staff Sgt. Ryan Knauss on Thursday night

Both teams sported helmet stickers with the fallen soldiers initials.
Published: Sep. 16, 2021 at 11:21 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - On Thursday night, Gibbs High School and Fulton High School football teams honored the late Army Staff Sergeant Ryan Knauss.

On the back of both teams helmets were separate, but just as moving, helmet stickers.

Gibbs had a ribbon with a star and the number 13, which included the initials RCK, while Fulton had a black with white lettering stickers that had RK.

”He gave everything so that we can come out here on a Friday night and enjoy a football game,” said Fulton Athletic Director, Jeff Thomas.

The idea came to the staff and coaches at Gibbs almost immediately as a way to honor the young soldier.

”Almost immediately, that’s just how things are here,” said Thomas. ”He’s a Gibbs guy through and through.”

Fans were in the stands of both Gibbs and Fulton, but all stopping to remember the life of a young man who defended their freedom.

”These young men will be able to step up when it’s time for them to step up and they know that there have been sacrifices and for them to be able to play football tonight, that guy gave his life for that,” said Marilyn Childress a US Navy Veteran.

While a small gesture, all who held a part, hopes it teaches the younger generation about sacrifice.

”Sometimes we don’t understand that the men that die in wars make it possible for us to do fun things and complain about ordinary things, that’s what it means,” said Thomas.

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