Philip Lutzenkirchen's family starts foundation in his honor - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

Philip Lutzenkirchen's family starts foundation in his honor

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AUBURN, AL (WSFA) -

The Auburn Tigers will welcome the Arkansas Razorbacks to Jordan Hare Stadium Saturday. Before the game gets started, Auburn will pause to remember Philip Lutzenkirchen.

Philip Lutzenkirchen's big plays on the field landed him a spot in Auburn's record books, but his big heart and character made him an all-time fan favorite.

Two months after he was killed in a car crash, fans continue to shower the Lutzenkirchen family with love and support -- a source of comfort for the family.

We had a chance to speak with his father about how the family's coping and the foundation they've started in his honor.

Auburn Alumni in Atlanta recently honored Philip by raising money for a scholarship.

"It speaks volumes to who he was. He made his name playing at Auburn," Mike Lutzenkirchen said.

Mike Lutzenkirchen remembers his son as a lovable guy who never took himself too seriously.

"He was as goofy as could be, yet when Auburn asked him to represent that brand, he took it very seriously," Mike Lutzenkirchen said.

Coach Gus Malzahn called Lutzenkirchen one of the best players to ever put on an Auburn jersey. Auburn will honor number 43 with a moment of silence before Saturday's game.

"It's sad in one hand because he's 23 and gone, but it's an honor," Mike

Through their grief, the Lutzenkirchen's have created the Lutzie 43 Foundation.

The foundation aims to develop the character of young athletes.

It's mission -- to teach others to live like Lutz, love like Lutz, learn from Lutz.

"I don't know if Philip had any enemies. Other players and other teams respected him. He just had this God given quality to accept people, and we've heard so many times that they felt like they knew him and they never met him," Mike Lutzenkirchen said.

The Lutzenkirchen's will not be at Saturday's game. They'll be in Nashville to cheer on their daughter, Abby -- a soccer player at Alabama. This year, she's chosen to wear number 43 in honor of her brother.

Auburn will also remember David Langner who died of cancer in April.

He recovered two blocked punts that helped Auburn to its 17-16 "Punt, Bama, Punt" win in 1972.

Copyright 2014 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.

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