BREAKING NEWS: Bob Hayes and the Hall of Fraud
Or, as the old Florida A&M college buddy and former business manager of newly minted Pro Football Hall of Fame member Bob Hayes says of Lucille Hester:
"She's a fake. A total perpetrator. She's hoodwinked the Dallas Cowboys, the NFL, the Hall of Fame and the national media. But she isn't a member of the Hayes family. And she's about to be exposed."
Before the accolades, tributes and "better late than never"s finished trickling in, Ted McIntosh is lampooning Hayes' Saturday induction to the Hall of Fame. Not on the player's merit, of course. But on the prominent role played by Hayes' "sister", Hester.
Presenting herself as Hayes' older sibling, Lucille served as the deceased receiver's spokesperson over the weekend in Tampa, even producing and reading a letter she claimed Hayes wrote in her presence in 1999. McIntosh, however, says Hester's assertions - right down to the letter - are counterfeit.
McIntosh first aired his startling revelation Sunday on 105.3 The Fan with Ben & Skin. He reiterated his stance to me last night.
"She isn't," McIntosh said, "related to Bob Hayes. She's an impostor."
This news, of course, comes as a shock to the NFL, the Hall of Fame, the Cowboys and Dallas Morning News columnist Jean-Jacques Taylor. But dig just a little below the surface and McIntosh's claims seem to have merit.
And you thought Martellus Bennett's videos and Ken Hamlin's birthday party guests were troubling?
Hayes was one of the NFL's most transcendent players, his blazing speed leading to an Olympic gold medal, a Super Bowl ring and a drastic change in the way secondaries tried to cover him. After a 34-year wait his enshrinement into the Hall of Fame made for a feel-good story. But the new revelations will likely become an ugly national story.
McIntosh acknowledges that Hester grew up "a block and a half" from the Hayes' house in Jacksonville, Fla. That, however, is where he says the lies begin.
According to McIntosh, Hester only became "close" to Hayes on his death bed and later drew up a falsified will after his death in 2002, presenting paperwork that supposedly had Hayes leaving her his Super Bowl ring and Olympic gold medal.
"The good news is that Bob's next of kin, Bob Hayes, Jr., has possession of those priceless items," McIntosh said. "But that didn't stop her from trying to steal and exploit his name for personal gain."
Hester was in Tampa this week - site of yesterday's dramatic Super Bowl XLIII - trumpeting Hayes' Hall of Fame candidacy, then rejoicing and reading upon his coronation. McIntosh, who lives in Dallas, said the Hayes family was shocked and moved to action by her latest attempt to hijack Bob's legacy.
"When this is all said and done the family will press criminal charges," he said. "She's stolen from them, including that magic moment on Saturday."
Look, I'm no CSI: Handwriting expert, but it's clear that the signatures on authentic Hayes memorabilia here and here the supposed letter owned by Hester aren't from the same person. Right? Furthermore, Hester claimed Hayes penned the letter in Washington, D.C.
Says McIntosh, "The only time Bob Hayes went to D.C. was to play against the Redskins."
McIntosh, on behalf of the family, has generated emails, faxes and phone calls to the Cowboys, the NFL, Hall of Fame and national media outlets. Though not for publication, I was allowed to peruse letters from McIntosh - on behalf of the Hayes family - addressed to Cowboys' owner Jerry Jones, the Hall of Fame and the NFL Players' Association.
He said he received a call late Sunday from Hall of Fame vice president Joe Horrigan offering an invite for Bob Hayes, Jr. to attend the upcoming Pro Bowl in Hawaii.
But what we want is the family be acknowledged, not this impostor," said McIntosh, who serves as Bob Hayes Jr.'s Godfather. "We want to be represented at the induction ceremonies in Canton in August. We're not going to let up on her. She's gotten away with too much for too long already."
As for Taylor's recent columns praising Hester, McIntosh said he tried to warn the writer months ago.
"I called him and told him that this was not Bob Hayes' sister," he said. "I told him he should do some investigating of her background before he printed anything else. But he was like 'Oh yeah, sure' and blew me off. I tried to warn him."
In an email from the Super Bowl last night, Taylor vehemently denied ever talking with McIntosh.
To be continued ...