Harlingen, Texas (KVEO) — On Monday activist, actor and former NFL athlete, Terry Crews shared his journey from working in a courtroom as a sketch artist to becoming a Time Person of the Year to UTRGV students, faculty and staff.
Crews inspired the virtual audience during UTRGV’s Student Activities Distinguished Speakers Series. The actor spoke to a record-breaking audience of 1,200 people watching from home, according to a press release sent by UTRGV.
The virtual event was dedicated to the late UTRGV men’s basketball Head Coach Lew Hill, who died Sunday.
“Hello! Hello! Good evening everybody. Ay! Ay!” said the former NFL athlete as he greeted the virtual audience.
While telling his journey, Crews began the speech by talking about how he found peace in art while living in a “strange household” in Flint, Michigan.
“For me, art was my peace. I remember as a kid pulling out the paper, pencils and colored pencils and markers, and I would get lost for hours and hours,” he said after describing his home as a “weird place to grow up because [my parents] were always fighting.”
His passion for art gave him opportunities for scholarships and his first job a courtroom sketch artist in Michigan.
“This may be of no shock to anybody, but I used to draw muscles. Comic books, that was my thing, and I would draw muscle men and superheroes,” Crews said.
In 1977, Star Wars changed the actor’s life “I knew in that moment that I would be in entertainment forever,” Crews said.
Four decades later, in 2017 The Brooklyn Nine-Nine actor became a “Silence Breaker” in the #MeToo Movement, becoming one of the people recognized as a Time Person of the Year.
Crews said he thanked the women that came forward during the Harvey Weinstein scandal.
“It was their courage that allowed me to tell my story,” he said.
The award-winning author said he was sexually assaulted by a powerful Hollywood executive.
“If I don’t stand with these women and if I don’t speak out, then I don’t think I will have another chance,” he said.