A Dance with Joslyn

Since mid-March, the National Football League has been in a work stoppage.

Even though the season's games don't start until September, each organization uses the spring and summer for training and preparation.

This off-season, until the contract dispute is settled, there is no training or preparation.

The players are "locked-out" and prohibited from going to work.

With the additional free time, some players have been in the news--for good and bad reasons.

Rookie J.T. Thomas of the Chicago Bears is the subject of a positive story:

...Last Friday, Thomas accompanied 14-year-old Joslyn Levell, who has spina bifida and is often confined to a wheelchair, to her school dance.

The two met in Morgantown, West Virginia; that's where Thomas went to college, and Levell, a Bears fan, moved there two years ago.

Thomas' 7-year-old brother, Jared, has autism and rides the same bus as Levell.

Knowing Levell was a Bears fan, bus driver Jake Tennant planned to introduce Jared's older brother to her. Nearly three weeks ago, J.T. was invited on the bus while kids were being dropped off at home.

What timing. As J.T. met a Bears fan in his hometown, Joslyn explained to him that she'd had a rough week because all of the boys she asked to the dance declined.

Thomas melted.

"I hugged her and signed a few things and we talked for awhile and she cried a bit," Thomas told NFL.com's Steve Wyche. "I gave her a hug and told her everything would work itself out..." 

...Luckily, it all worked out. Thomas rented a black Chrysler for the occasion and showed up at Levell's house with a bouquet of roses and a corsage.

And Thomas...was frank about his role in Levell's big night. "This was Joslyn's night. It wasn't about me."


Lydia K said...

Aw, what a lovely story!

Diane said...

Great story to share! Glad some of them are using their notariety for good. :O)

Dan said...

It is so good to see people responding with their heart.

That is one of the joys of having a public role - the little things you do can mean so much to someone else.

Dawn said...

Love it....and like the part when it's stated, "It wasn't about me."
If we could always realize that....

secret agent woman said...

That's really wonderful.

Herding Cats said...

I kind of teared up. What a sweet man - if only all athletes were so inspirational!

My Husband's Watching TV... said...

That is a great story-finally some good positive news!

J. J. in Phila said...

Great story. :)

carma said...

tears in my eyes - I saw something about this in the news but hadn't read it - what a guy!!!!

A Doc 2 Be said...

I read this yesterday as well but was posting on the savage tornadoes in MO. This heart warming story is almost going to make me Da Bears fan... (did I really type that out loud?)

When the NFL sorely needs some good news and solid role models, this young man has done so without asking for it.


Maxi said...

Love begets love.

Thanks for sharing Slam.

Lisa said...

It's so great to hear about athletes that do things like this instead of being arrested for stupid stuff. This is heartwarming on all fronts.

Kristen @ Motherese said...

What a great story. Thank you for sharing it.

My favorite part is that he called it "Joslyn's night." It sounds like he has a remarkable amount of humility for a professional athlete.