While the Denver Broncos are definitively in the public eye this week for numerous reasons, stretching from quarterback Peyton Manning’s supposed ineffectiveness to an impressive defensive performance in a 19-13 win over the Baltimore Ravens Sunday, Manning perpetually puts others first above all else.
As I was in the process of scouring Twitter for all things Broncos to better assist my followers and connections, Broncos cheerleader Romi Bean retweeted an article from The Denver Post written by Nicki Jhabvala concerning Manning’s tremendous compassion.
Anyway, the impetus of Jhabvala’s piece is Dana Benbow, a sports reporter for the Indianapolis Star, who wrote an open letter to Manning in Wednesday’s edition of the paper, thanking him for flying her breast cancer-stricken friend, Kari Barnett Bollig of Rock Springs, Wyo., to the Broncos-Ravens game Sunday.
Bollig is dying of breast cancer, as she is currently in Stage 4 of the debilitating disease, and has recently written letters to those who have meant something to her. Among those is Manning, the prodigious passer whose on-field exploits seem to be dwarfed by his class acts off of the gridiron.
Upon receiving Bollig’s letter, Manning flew his 45-year-old fan and her husband, Ed, to Denver, granting them tickets and sideline passes to the game against Baltimore.
On both Saturday and Sunday, they were allowed to tour Sports Authority Field at Mile High and watch the team as they had their walk-through and 2015 team photo while the featured event was, as could be expected, meeting Manning.
Manning reportedly walked up to Bollig, shaking her hand and said ‘I’m Peyton Manning.’ Bollig called this gesture “cute” and replied affirmatively that she knew who Manning was.
This event caused Benbow to become more of a believer in not only Manning the quarterback, but Manning the person. When someone is inspired to become a better person and follows through, that is something more meritorious of celebration than seeing your favorite team win.
I will not preach religion here but I cannot help but be inspired to be better in my spiritual beliefs because Manning is such a stellar example for how to live an honorable life. There is so much good we can do for others and we simply need to make the time to serve, when we’re not watching the Broncos of course!
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