The Second Life of Tyrone Braxton


By Tim Covi
Photography By Ross Evertson

For anyone who followed football through the 1990’s
, Tyrone Braxton, or “Chicken” as he was known back then, is a household name. He played for 13 seasons (12 with the Denver Broncos) and was a star on the defensive line. He lays claim to the 4th all-time interception return record and two Super Bowl rings. For a 12th round draft pick, he defined perseverance, and he’s still doing it.

Since retiring in 1999, Braxton hasn’t dallied. He started two companies, finished his Bachelor’s degree, and is now going back to Metro State in the fall to start a Master’s of Social Work degree. With his eyes turned toward his legacy and what he can do to help others, Braxton is working with incarcerated youth in a Colorado Detention Facility. We talked to him about his second life since football and the changes he’s working to create in society.
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Motel of Last Resorts

Homeless families make up nearly 50 percent of Denver's homeless population, but only 15 percent of shelter beds accommodate families. Is enough being done to keep families together? 

By Kristin Pazulski

Karla Hood and her 20-year-old son Karron have been living together in a small motel room off Colfax Avenue since February. 

Their home is in the Volunteers of America’s (VOA) Family Motel. During the day, the sun glitters off the 70s-style lettering of the sign that still stands from the motel’s former life as Aristocrat Motel. In their room, there are two beds, a closet, a bathroom, two nightstands and a chest of drawers. The room is strewn with belongings that once filled their two-bedroom apartment, but are now confined to the two-bed motel room.

Karla, 48, and Karron had to leave their home of 20 years in February when the landlord of their subsidized housing in East Denver refused to renew Karla’s lease. “It was such a last minute situation,” she said. “I had to leave behind about 75 percent of our stuff. I couldn’t afford the storage. I just let it go. I cried a lot and prayed a lot.”

 

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