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Pope set to visit new hospital in his hometown

Published: Feb. 7, 2012 at 2:22 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 10, 2012 at 10:48 PM EST
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AMERICUS, GA (WALB) - Americus native Leonard Pope, who was an All-SEC tight end at the University of Georgia and now plays for the Kansas City Chiefs in the NFL, is returning to his hometown to tour the city's newest point pride, Phoebe Sumter Hospital.

Pope was born at Sumter Regional Hospital, which was destroyed by a tornado in 2007, and has raised more than $32,000 to help the hospital recover and rebuild.

Pope also went to Joplin, Missouri as part of the Kansas City Chiefs contingent in support of their community after a tornado destroyed their hometown hospital and caused millions in damages and fatalities as well.

A new hospital was built in Americus and opened on December 16th, 2011, and Tuesday will be the first time Pope has been to the new facility since it opened.

Pope partners with Phoebe Sumter to help promote active lifestyles for children in the community. Obesity among children has become a problem nationwide, and it is even more prevalent in the South.

For this reason Pope wants to promote kids being active and eating healthy and to create awareness about the dangers of childhood obesity, which could lead to a lifetime of health problems.

Pope is also a water safety advocate, and gained national acclaim for saving a young child from drowning during the NFL lockout in 2011.

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