DENVER — Ben Garland, a former Grand Junction Central High School and Air Force Academy star, is making his third Super Bowl appearance in search of his first ring.
The 31-year-old is the starting center for the San Francisco 49ers. He has previously played in Super Bowls with the Denver Broncos and Atlanta Falcons.
Reached in the family hometown of Grand Junction, Garland’s father, John Hildebrand, is incredibly proud.
“I get stopped a lot on the street because people know me and know that he’s my son,” Hildebrand said.
Garland is a captain with the Colorado Air National Guard. In the off-season, Garland continues to fulfill his reservist duties at Buckley Air Force Base.
Last year, Garland was the “Salute to Service” award winner in the National Football League. Salute to Service is a year-round effort to encourage military appreciation.