Korean-American football star Hines Ward, bottom right, of Pittsburgh Steelers participates in an event held by the Pearl S. Buck International group, which helps biracial children, in Seoul, in this April 8, 2006 photo. The Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver, who left South Korea as a toddler, will visit Korea Oct. 14 for a four-day visit. / Reuters File Photo
By Kang Seung-woo
Former Super Bowl MVP Hines Ward of the Pittsburgh Steelers will visit Korea on Oct. 14.
During his four-day trip to the place of his birth, the 31-year-old Korean-American football star will work with his charity organization, which supports people of mixed ethnic backgrounds, who have often faced discrimination in Korea.
The Steelers will have a bye week on Oct. 14, following a game against the Seattle Seahawks, which will enable Ward, a University of Georgia graduate, to fit the trip to Korea into his schedule.
Ward, a wide receiver, has played three games this season and has nine receptions for 108 yards and one touchdown.
He sprained his right knee in the third quarter of the Steelers' 37-16 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Sept. 23, which caused him to sit out a game against the Arizona Cardinals last Sunday. It was only the fourth time he has missed a game in his 10-season career in the National Football League (NFL).
After being named the MVP in Pittsburgh's 21-10 win over Seattle in Super Bowl XL in 2006, Ward, whose mother is Korean, returned to his birthplace of Seoul for the first time since his parents moved to the United States when he was 1 year old. He visited Korea twice last year, donating $1 million to create his charity, the Hines Ward Helping Hands Foundation.
He also donated $1 million for mixed-race people and Korean people in the United States last year.