SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— With last week’s passing of anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela, John Madden had a chance to tell the KCBS morning crew about the time he met the revolutionary.

“It was one of the great days of my life,” he said. It was during a Dallas Cowboy’s game in 1999 where the visiting team was the Washington Redskins.

Mandela was Jerry Jones’ guest. After the game, Madden said he got a call in the press box inviting him down to meet Mandela.

“I went down in the locker room and you just walked in the door and you felt his presence. You know when you shook his hand – and he had one of the biggest hands that I’d ever shaken – you just knew that you were doing something that was very, very special.”

Madden did manage to get a picture of the meeting with Troy Aikman included in that memorable photo op.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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