Here's all the latest news about Against All Odds: 4th Down and Forever and information on my book signings/speaking engagements.

Dodgen Student Essay Leads to New Marshall University Memorial
September 21, 2021

In November 2019, Dodgen Middle School students in seventh grade English Language Arts classes began a case study on perseverance. They studied what happened to Marshall University and the city of Huntington, West Virginia, following the plane crash that killed the 1970 Marshall football team.

The students read and analyzed several articles from the Huntington Herald-Dispatch, watched the November 14th annual Marshall fountain memorial service live, as well as segments of the movie "We Are Marshall." They also listened and took notes from guest speaker and Cobb County resident Lester Hicks, a member of the team known as the Young thundering Heard that rebuilt the Marshall football program following the tragedy.


The Dodgen students questioned whether the university had ever considered creating some sort of memorial to the Young Thundering Herd and Jack Lengyel, Marshall’s new coach after the plane crash. Students discussed and pondered what would Marshall football, the city of Huntington, and the university be like today had Jack Lengyel or those players not committed to rebuilding the program. 


Full Article


Exploring Marshall Ep.4: Young Thundering Herd
September 17, 2021

Every university has its revered athletes and celebrated teams of the past, and Marshall University is no exception. But not every institution has a history comparable to that of Marshall University’s football program. In the wake of utter disaster and despair, the Young Thundering Herd, a team comprised of mostly freshman, took the field carrying both the university and City of Huntington forward. There were no trophies at the end of the 1971 season, no championship to tout, but you will have a hard time convincing members of the Marshall University family that this team is anything less than spectacular.


Undoubtedly, the Young Thundering Herd have left their mark on Marshall University and college football history. These valiant Sons of Marshall exemplify what it means to persevere; to reach beyond what you think you are capable of and trust in those around you to help bring it all together. The success Marshall Football has experienced throughout the years since 1971 rests on the mighty shoulders of these men and on behalf of the Marshall family we are eternally grateful. GO HERD!!


The Young Thundering Herd, In Their Own Words
September 13, 2021

2021 is the 50th Anniversary of the 1971 Marshall University Football Team, also known as "The Young Thundering Herd."


Reggie M Oliver Street Unveiling Ceremony
Coordinated by Lester Brian Hicks
October 23, 2020

The City of Huntington hosted an honorary street designation ceremony Friday, Oct. 23, 2020, in the Fairfield community for Young Thundering Herd quarterback Reggie Oliver.


Lockheed Martin Corporation 


June 13, 2016


Marietta Environmental Safety Engineer Les Hicks Honored by Marshall University

Watch Les Hicks discuss receiving the 2016 Distinguished Alumnus Award from Marshal University. Clip starts at the 2:17 mark.



Marshall University Alumni Association Introduction Video for Distinguished Alumnus 2016

By Marshall University Alumni Association

April 21, 2016


Thank you to the Marshall University Alumni Association for the spectacular introduction video and the prestigious honor!



Lester Hicks Takes Readers through the Marshall University Crash in ‘Against all Odds – 4th Down and Forever

(PRWEB) July 11, 2014


So thankful for all the support regarding my book. Keep spreading the word!



2014 B4 Youth Program: Lester Hicks


June 21, 2014


Former Marshall football player Lester Hicks was the featured speaker at the 2014 B4 youth program June 13 at Marshall University's Memorial Student Center. Hicks nearly took his life before turning his life around and becoming a college graduate and engineer. His book, "Against All Odds -- Fourth Down And Forever" is about how the 1970 Marshall plane crash inspired his life.



Akron News Now Interview 

By The Ray Horner Morning Show

November 14, 2013



Lester Hicks Marshall UnivRay Horner
00:00 / 04:41
Former Marshall player inspired by plane crash

By Gary Fauber
Assistant Sports Editor

November 13, 2013


Thank you Gary Fauber and The Register-Herald for the wonderful article!



Sports Radio 1430 WEIR

October 16, 2013


Thank you Joey Klepack of Sports Radio 1430 WEIR for the interview! 

Sports Radio 1430 WEIR Interview - Lester Hicks
00:00 / 00:00
Steubenville City Schools

September 17, 2013


Thank you Superintendent of Steubenville City Schools Mike McVey and Principal Shawn Crosier for this thoughtful video!



AuthorTalk #2 Radio Podcast

Sunday August 18, 2013


Want to learn more about the person behind the book? Click the 8-18-13 podcast link below to hear Lester Hicks explain why he wrote the book and how he hopes it inspires others


AuthorTalk #2 Radio order of interviews for the 8/18/13 show: 2:00-3:00PM EST 1. Against All odds-4th Down and Forever: How The 1970 Marshall University Football Team Plane Crash Inspired Me; by Lester Brian Hicks 2. 



AuthorTalk 2 Radio Interview - Lester Hicks
00:00 / 00:00