When Houston Texans fan Jennifer Simpson tweeted Wednesday night that she was willing to sell a pair of JJ Watt Reebok sneakers and an old Watt replica jersey to pay for her grandfather’s funeral, she received a response from an unlikely source : Watt himself.
“Don’t sell your shoes and jersey,” Watt tweeted. “We’ll help with the funeral.”
Ms Simpson, whose Twitter bio claims she is a 26-year-old teacher, was delighted.
“I fucking love you man,” Ms. Simpson replied. It’s been a tough year for me and this past month has been tough since I passed away. I wish I could tell you my story.”
Ms. Simpson is a fan of the Houston Texans, with whom NFL team Watt rose to stardom after making him a first-round draft pick in 2011. Watt spent the next nine years in Houston, being named NFL Defensive Player of the Year three times and earning five All Pro selections.
Watt left the Texans to join the Arizona Cardinals in 2021, but he remains popular in Houston for both his dominant defensive play and community presence. a presence that earned Watt the NFL’s 2017 Walter Payton Man of the Year Award after working to raise approximately $40 million for relief efforts while Houston worked to recover from the devastating effects of the hurricane to recover Harvey.
Watt has been involved in philanthropy throughout his professional career. He established the Justin J. Watt Foundation to help children access after-school opportunities in sports and other fields, paid for the funeral expenses of victims of a Christmas parade attack in Waukesha, Wisconsin last year, and offered to pay for the Funerals of children come up for victims of the mass shooting at Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas in 2018.
The soccer star is perhaps just as well known in Houston for the small gestures of kindness he has offered fans, and this could be another of those instances. Corresponding reporting of the Houston Chroniclethe Simpson family has been trying to raise funds to pay for the funeral since June 20 amid financial challenges. Watt’s offer could put an end to that fight.
“I was trying to sell valuable items last night to raise money,” Ms Simpson said tweeted on Thursday morning. “I woke up overwhelmed by the love and support from people who don’t even know my grandfather’s story. My family is so grateful to you all!”
https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/us-sport/jj-watt-nfl-grandfather-funeral-b2128732.html NFL star JJ Watt is offering to pay for a fan’s grandfather’s funeral