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April 30 birthdays in Pats History: Boston Patriots All Star Ron Hall

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Sep 12th

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Today in Patriots History
A Boston Patriot All-Star

Happy 84th birthday to Ron Hall
Born April 30, 1937; from Granite City, Illinois
Patriot safety, 1961-1967; uniform #23
Signed as a free agent on October 12, 1961

Ron Hall was a late draft pick by Pittsburgh in 1959, but was drafted and had to serve two years in the Army before being able to sign with the Patriots.. For many years Ron held the franchise record for career interceptions (29), and even now he still ranks third all time in that category behind only Raymond Clayborn and Ty Law. His 11 picks in 1964 is still a single season team record, and it ranks as the 14th most in pro football history.

From the 1967 Patriots Media Guide:

This hard hitting seven year veteran is known for his leadership on defense . . . one of the league's most aggressive free safeties . . . ranked sixth in AFL last year with six interceptions . . . one against Denver set a record of 87 yards — the longest in '66 AFL action . . . has especially fine duels with Chiefs' Otis Taylor . . . rents his Missouri home in off-season to another Chief, end Chris Buford . . . led AFL last year with 26.5 yard average per interception . . . was chief executioner of Boston's safety blitz . . . joined Pats in '61 but was cut by former Coach Lou Saban . . . was first to be called back when Coach Holovak took over . . . grabbed 11 interceptions in '64 and made Eastern All-Stars . . . can run well once he gets the ball . . . a solid veteran performer.​

Ron Hall was an AFL All-Star in 1963, first team All Pro in 1964, a member of the Patriots All-Decade team for the 1960s, and was named to the Patriots 35th Anniversary Team. After retiring Hall was a high school phys ed teacher and football coach.

This is an excellent read on Ron Hall's life journey from a small steel mill town, to the Army, to a call from Mike Holovak and much more:

Ron Hall - Missouri Sports Hall of Fame

For more on Hall and the AFL, check out this Q&A: Email from the AFL: Boston Patriots Ron Hall.



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Happy birthday to Paul Lindquist, who would have been 82 today
Born April 30, 1939 in Brockton
Patriot DT, 1961; uniform #67

Paul Lindquist was a local south shore guy; he was born in Brockton and grew up in Abington. Lindquist went to the University of New Hampshire where he lettered on the track and football teams, and was later inducted into the UNH Sports Hall of Fame. He was an eighth round (99th overall) draft pick by the Vikings in 1961, but chose to stay home and sign with the Pats instead. Paul played for the Patriots in their second season of existence, then served in the Army from 1962-1964.

Lindquist later became co-owner of Estes Auto Supply in Rockland, and was the Sales Manager of the Walmart in his hometown of Abington up to the time of his death (November 6, 2003).


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Unhappy 55th birthday to Dave Meggett
Born April 30, 1966 in Charleston, SC
Patriot RB/PR/KR, 1995-1997; uniform #22
Signed as an unrestricted free agent on March 3, 1995

Dave Meggett was one of the best return specialists in the history of pro football. He had his best season in '96, recording 1,966 all-purpose yards while earning his second trip to the Pro Bowl, and was a major factor in the Patriots advancing to Super Bowl 31. Meggett had 13,996 career all-purpose yards, and his 3,708 punt return yards were at that time most in NFL history. He also completed four of eight passes for 114 yards and four touchdowns, and scored 19 touchdowns as a third down back.

Sadly, after retiring he was involved in multiple assault cases, and is currently serving a 30-year prison sentence for burglary and criminal sexual conduct. The former Walter Payton Award winner (1988) will remain behind bars until at least 2034.



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Unhappy 61st birthday to Edmund Nelson
Born April 30, 1960 in Live Oak, Florida
Patriot DE, 1988; uniform #65
Signed as a free agent on September 7, 1988

Edmund Clau-Von Nelson was a country boy from rural Florida, who went to Auburn. A 7th round (177th overall) pick by the Steelers in 1982, he went on to start 42 games for Pittsburgh over six seasons with the Steelers. He was released in the second week of the '88 season and was then picked up by the Pats to play for Raymond Berry's team.

Nelson says he does not have fond memories of his time in New England, stating that "I hated the Boston area and they didn’t treat me very well". Part of that may have been the insult added to injury when the Patriots released him, and he was picked up by the Browns for the last week of the season; part of that may be due to his current employment. Regardless, that was the end of his nondescript NFL career. Nelson appeared in twelve games for the Patriots, with one start; the Pats went 6-6 in those games.

Since then Nelson worked as a State Farm insurance agent for over two decades, for the NFL with game day compliance (i.e., Uniform Inspector), and for 20 years doing Steeler preseason broadcasts, pre and post-game shows.


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Two other players born on this date with New England connections:

Mark MacDonald, 60 (4/30/1961)
MacDonald was born in West Roxbury, went Catholic Memorial High School, and then Boston College. At BC he was an offensive tackle who blocked on the famous Hail Flutie touchdown pass to Gerald Phelan to beat Miami. MacDonald was a fifth round (115th overall) pick by the Vikings in 1985; over four seasons he appeared in 44 NFL games as a guard, with four starts. MacDonald was inducted into BC's Hall of Fame in 2002.

Augie Lio (4/30/1918 - 9/3/1989)
Born in East Boston, Augie Lio was a kicker and offensive lineman from 1941-47 for the Lions, Boston Yanks, and Eagles. He was named to two Pro Bowls and is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame.


In the Starting Line-Up
A little note of no historical significance, my bowling team was named The Dave Megette Five