Football star Henry Gizmo Williams has had to deal with uncertainty and change his whole life. He comes from a family struck by multiple sclerosis. It claimed his mother in 1969 and took seven of his 10 siblings.
While no one in his family lived beyond 35 years old, Gizmo is over 60. He said he doesn’t worry about what he can’t control but trusts God.
It was hard after his mom died that Christmas. His father was killed in a house fire a year later. His older brother kept the family together and he became Gizmo’s hero.
Gizmo’s story is one of faith, vulnerability, resilience, and strength. Even as a punt returner, Gizmo never felt the pressure on the field that he felt in life.
Football was Henry’s way out of a hard life. It was in his first year as a professional, back in 1983 with the Memphis Showboats, that an imaginative lineman named Reggie White sized Henry Williams up, watched him play a little and dubbed him `Gizmo.’
Williams played on two Grey Cup championship teams in Edmonton and was a five-time league all-star. Williams has also been very active in the community, receiving the 1988-89 Eskimo Community Service awards for those efforts.
Renowned as one of pro football’s most electrifying players, Edmonton Eskimos kick returner Henry “The Gizmo” Williams is the most prolific kick returner in CFL history. However, it is his exceptional character, in addition to his outstanding athletic ability, which have made him the remarkable fan favorite he is throughout Canada.