GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) – In the spirit of Thanksgiving former J.H. Rose standout wide receiver Cornell Powell returned home to Greenville. The Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver helping distribute food, with the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina, to people in need in his hometown.
“It’s so special to be able to give back to the community. Especially the one that I grew up in with all my family here. You look around and all the volunteers are my family. My aunts, my grandmas, and my uncles. It’s definitely special,” says Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Cornell Powell, “I was fortunate enough to be able to be put in this situation. So I just wanted to you know give back as much as possible.”
Greenville’s Cornell Powell played for J.H. Rose before going to Clemson where he won two national titles. Powell got drafted by the Chiefs in the 5th round this year.
“I’ve been wanting to do this since I was 5,” says Powell, “So for that dream being able to come true is just amazing.”
He’s currently on their practice squad working hard for his Sunday spot.
“In the NFL, any given day, you can come out and be promoted,” says Powell, “Especially in this pandemic… You gotta be ready. During the week you just game plan and prepare every week like you are going to play on Sunday.”
When Cornell got drafted, he started “The Powell Project.” The holiday food distribution event is the first for his charity.
“Families have been rolling through here left and right,” says Powell, “Just to see the smile on their face when they leave, it warms my heart, and that is the reason why I do it.”
One of the community members to stop by was current Rose head football coach Will Bland.
“Even when he was in high school, reading to all the middle school kids during ‘Read Across America’, he was always willing to give back,” says J.H. Rose head football coach Will Bland, “And just to have him come back here, when he made it big, and show support to the little people in Greenville is fantastic.”
Bland was Powell’s receivers coach at Rose.
“I’m just fortunate enough to be here and watch him grow,” says Bland, “We talked all the time when he was in college. Any time he needed I was there for him. So I’m just very proud of him.”
Putting the giving in Thanksgiving.
“Unbelievably blessed each and every day,” says Powell, “Just try to go out and make the most of each and every day and impact as many people as I can.”
Cornell setting an example for Greenville to be thankful for.
“It’s possible to make it out,” says Powell, “Then when you do, you plant a seed back into your community that you came from.”
Cornell’s “Powell Project” has two more events in the works right now. They plan to hold a book drive for two Greenville elementary schools soon. He also hopes to hold a football camp this summer at J.H. Rose.
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