Retired NFL linebacker Ray Lewis played through many injuries during his football career, but he won’t be hiking through any now that he’s off the gridiron for good.
Lewis, who is part of TackleKili, a group climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise money and awareness for clean water projects in East Africa, had to cancel his climb due to illness and a swollen foot, according to the TackleKili Network website.
“…by evening Ray knew something was wrong,” a message posted on the website read. “A fever spiked and his foot, which had been injured and re-injured during his 17 year career, began to swell. This was not good. In the end, Ray’s decision was to let the team move on without him, rather than hold them back or put himself in a position where an injury which requires surgery could become even more complicated. As always, his team backed his play. So while Ray re-focused his service to this cause at a lower altitude, his team began the ascent on behalf of those in desperate need of clean water.”
Prior to the trek, Lewis — alongside Brad Pitt‘s brother, Doug — helped fit children with hearing aids.
Mount Kilimanjaro stands 19,341 feet tall — the highest freestanding mountain in the world.
Thanks to Yahoo! Sports for the tip