VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - The City of Valdosta and the Valdosta City Schools System honored Valdosta native and Super Bowl champion Malcolm Mitchell Monday.
March 6th was declared Malcolm Mitchell day, and Mitchell was presented with a key to the City.
"It makes our city proud, very proud, to know what he's done and the way he's represented us," said Jefferies Eldridge.
Folks in Valdosta said Mitchell was more than deserving of the recognition.
"It's just a lot of pride to see what he's done. To know exactly how hard he's worked," said Eldridge, "He has given everything he has to make all this possible."
Eldridge has been watching Malcolm since his sophomore year of high school.
"To watch him go from just high school to a football player," recalled Eldridge, "To now an author and a leader in a reading initiative for children. It's just been great."
Mitchell went from Under Armour All-American as a Wildcat to ALL-SEC Freshman as a Georgia Bulldog.
Now, he's recognized for helping the New England Patriots with the best comeback in Super Bowl history.
However, folks say his talents go far beyond the football field.
"The special things about Malcolm are not necessarily what he does on the field," said Valdosta High School football coach Alan Rodemaker.
Mitchell has written a children's book and comes back to Valdosta to promote literacy to students.
"He's certainly a good role model for our kids," Coach Rodemaker said about Mitchell's success.
His Wildcat roots run deep and folks here believe Malcolm Mitchell isn't done making a difference in this community yet.
"I'm very proud for him and excited for him for what he's done. This is just starting, so where's it going to be five years from now?" asked Eldridge.