And so the Tampa Bay Bucs manhandled the Kansas City Chiefs in the Super Bowl Sunday night. As fans in Florida and elsewhere celebrate a huge victory for the Bucs, it’s important to note that there were other winners over the weekend.
Meet Taeden Johnson, a 12-year-old from Athens, Georgia. He was given two tickets for Sunday’s game courtesy of Atlanta Falcons defensive tackle Grady Jarrett and the NFL. It was a great gift and gesture under devastating circumstances.
Johnson lost three family members in a house fire last week. Although Johnson was able to escape the fire in his family’s mobile home in Athens, Georgia, on Jan. 27, his mother, grandmother and little sister died in the fire. According to WSB-TV 2 in Atlanta, Johnson ran to a neighbor’s home to call 911 after unsuccessfully trying to save his family.
After mentor Zac Hendrix helped raise more than $200,000 for Johnson’s future through a GoFundMe campaign, Jarrett stepped into the picture by surprising Johnson with two tickets to the Super Bowl on a Zoom call during CBS This Morning on Friday. Johnson had never seen an NFL game live.
The Falcons provided transportation and hotel accommodations for Johnson and his guest as well.
“The NFL and the Falcons are going to take real good care of you this year,” he said. “You just have a memorable time.”
“I want to play in the NFL, too,” Johnson said.
Perhaps he got a wonderful glimpse of his future on Super Bowl Sunday.