- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Washington Redskins will induct the late Sean Taylor into the Ring of Fame at FedEx Field on Nov. 30, the team announced Wednesday.

The Pro Bowl safety, who was shot to death last November, will be made the 43rd member of the Ring of Fame before the Redskins’ game against the New York Giants on Nov. 30.

“It’s appropriate that Sean joins our Ring of Fame after a stellar career cut short far too soon,” owner Dan Snyder said in a statement. “His life touched so many of us in such deep and lasting ways. His presence is all around us, in our organization and among our fans.”

Taylor injured a knee last Nov. 11 against the Philadelphia Eagles, then two weekends later took a break from rehabilitation to go home to South Florida. Early on Nov. 27, four men broke into Taylor’s suburban Miami home. Taylor confronted the men and was shot. Fans held a candlelight vigil at Redskin Park, but Taylor died of his wounds the next morning.

The Redskins organization attended Taylor’s funeral in Miami on Dec. 3. All NFL teams wore helmet decals bearing Taylor’s jersey number for the rest of the season.

Fueled in part by Taylor’s legacy, the Redskins won their final four games after the funeral to make the playoffs. His lockers at Redskin Park and FedEx Field have been encased in plexiglas with their contents the way he left them.

Taylor was the first player drafted by the Redskins, fifth overall, by Hall of Fame coach Joe Gibbs in his return to Washington in 2004 - kicking off two seasons of controversy for Taylor on and off the field.

Those difficulties culminated in June 2006 when Taylor pleaded no contest to assault and simple battery charges and was sentenced to probation and community service.

Taylor’s life then seemed to turn. He made the Pro Bowl in 2006 and was having his best season when he was injured in 2007. He was voted to a second Pro Bowl posthumously.

“Sean was developing into one of the best to ever play the safety position, as well as becoming a role model to those who knew him,” Redskins executive vice president Vinny Cerrato said in a statement. “He still touches us every day in some way on and off the field.”

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