'There were not very many dry eyes in the stadium. Class act all the way... football is more than wins and losses. It's a brotherhood, a bond like no other.'
It's always fantastic to witness genuine moments of camaraderie and community in a highly competitive environment like sports. The games are battles to the finish, but watching people unite to cheer one another on will undoubtedly touch people's emotions. Parents, instructors, and other staff members of a high school football team in Pennsylvania recently rallied together to perform an act of kindness for a player on the opposing team. During a game between Avon Grove High School and Coatesville High School last month, the two opposite football teams met at midfield in a rare moment of genuine love and support. Avon Grove player Gavin had just received a stage 3 Hodgkin's lymphoma diagnosis and both the school teams gathered to cheer Picard on with balloons and words of support.
Had a great visit @PENNfb today. Thanks to @CoachPriore @DanSwanstrom @coach_ru @Coach_Fallon for having me on campus. Looking forward to building a relationship with this amazing staff. #begreat #quakers pic.twitter.com/sfQwV11vf5— Gavin Picard (@GavinPicard12) October 16, 2022
In a video posted by the Coatesville football team on Twitter, the players and coaches can be seen showing their support for Gavin with balloons in the color of his cancer ribbon and one giant balloon shaped like the number 6, which is his jersey number. They're then all seen exchanging hugs with the star player who, according to a GoFundMe set up for his treatment costs, has the "sweetest soul."
Alongside the video, Coatesville wrote about the heartwarming incident in a tweet that reads: "Wins and losses do not define Coatesville Football. Because we know that it's not always about football, it's about who you are when that uniform comes off... that's what defines Coatesville Football... that's what defines #VILLEMENTALITY."
Corey Haggerty, mom to one of the cheerleaders for the Avon Grove team, shared what she felt about the beautiful experience, writing: "A game was played and for the love of humanity, Coatesville joined with their Football brother at Avon Grove to show their support in his battle with cancer. THIS is what needs to be shared in the media. THIS positivity is what our society needs to hear about."
Another mom, Rachael Taylor Wilson also took to Facebook to praise the amazing camaraderie shown by Coatesville. She wrote: "Ballons in the color of Gavin’s cancer ribbon and a #6 balloon. There were not very many dry eyes in the stadium. Class act all the way... football is more than wins and losses. It’s a brotherhood, a bond like no other."
She explained that the Coatesville team was able to empathize with the teen because they themselves were going through a rough time. "Coatesville’s been having their share of a few emotional weeks so they understand how things off the field can affect you on the field. No one is ever better than the next guy... sometimes the kids show the adults what life is really about," she concluded the post.
The outpouring of love and community support for the star football player is still flooding the comments of the GoFundMe page. A donor called Ryan Ashbee Coatesville #21 donated along with the comment, "Get well soon #6!" Another donor, Brad Lentz Coatesville #7, commented along with his donation: "You got this #6." A third donor by the username Maxine Rickabaugh wrote: "Keep fighting #6, you got this."
Wins and losses do not define Coatesville Football. Because we know that it's not always about football, it's about who you are when that uniform comes off...that's what defines Coatesville Football...that's what defines #VILLEMENTALITY. pic.twitter.com/HeVGibDqfq— COATESVILLE FOOTBALL (@Football_Cville) October 29, 2022