Saturday, October 13, 2012

Day 287: Passed A Football

I've never been a guy with connections.  I couldn't get someone tickets to a game for free.  I wasn't able to pick up the phone and get somebody in to a high end restaurant.  The biggest reason for this was the fact that I always felt weird asking for hookups, so I just never did.  But when I started 366 Random Acts, I told myself that there is nothing wrong with at least asking people for help if it is going to help do something for others.  The first time I tried this was on Day 18 when I wanted to give my building's doorman, Adam, tickets to see his hometown Buffalo Sabres play the Blackhawks here in Chicago.  A friend I have known for pretty much my entire life, Stephanie Sims, was so quick to respond and say that she wanted to donate tickets.  Needless to say, I was so thankful (and so was Adam) and it made me feel comfortable reaching out to people for help.

In 2009, I started a new job at Paychex selling payroll for small businesses.  I was sent to Rochester, NY for 2 weeks to get trained because I had absolutely no idea about payroll taxes.  While there, I met Jon Rawson.  Jon and I quickly hit it off, mostly due to the fact that the Bulls were playing the Celtics (Jon is from Worcester, MA) in the playoffs, so we spent our nights in Rochester watching games.  In just a few short days of knowing him and hearing his stories, I could tell that Jon was a stand up, loyal guy whose family and friends meant the world to him.  That's why I wasn't surprised in the least when I saw Jon post on Facebook that he was trying to help raise money for his friend Charlie, who suddenly collapsed during a race in August, and his been struggling for his life since.  Charlies family has set up a website in order to help raise funds for all of the medical bills that they will be facing on Charlie's road to recovery.

So why did I mention utilizing connections at the beginning of this post?  Well, I helped utilize connections for something that will either help Charlie and his family raise a great amount of money towards his recovery, or give him something to cherish when he wakes up. Being a native New Englander, Charlie is a gigantic New England Patriots fan. Rob Ninkovich of the Patriots just so happens to be a Chicagoan (and former member of the powerhouse that was the South Holland Jets). I reached out to Rob's sister, Laura, and asked if he could help in any way. She was more than happy to reach out to Rob (in the midst of the NFL season, mind you) and he and his wife sent over an autographed football for Charlie. So today, for my random act of kindness, I passed the football over to Jon who is going to either auction off the football or hand it to Charlie when he wakes up.

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