In 1989, the Salem Spartans were unbeatable. They rolled to a 10 and 0 regular season record, led by a hot shot sophomore quarterback named Steve Magenbauer.
In August of 1989 Stephen Magenbauer beat out three seniors for the starting quarterback job with the Spartans and quickly earned player of the week honors.
Salem opened the playoffs against Dan River and Magenbauer was having a field day throwing the football. But on the next to last play of the first half, an innocent tackle by Magenbauer from his linebacker spot ended his playing career forever.
He suffered partial paralysis caused by a congenital defect in his spine.
The following year he felt better than ever but the risk of serious paralysis from another hit kept him from playing.
Magenbauer channeled his energy into helping coach youth football and went on to graduate from Virginia Tech. In his career, he's served as the head coach at Glenvar, Hidden Valley, and Salem where he's led the Spartans to back to back state titles in 2004 and 2005.
Magenbaur has shown a great lesson in overcoming adversity.