The Florida State football team spent its Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in Shreveport rather than Tallahassee in preparation for the upcoming Independence Bowl, but even though the team was away from home, it used the holidays to give back to the community.
According to Florida State’s athletics website, the Seminole players spent a portion of Christmas Eve with children in Shreveport’s Providence House, a homeless shelter for children. There, punter Logan Tyler had an especially impactful visit. Tyler was playing catch with a 4-year-old named A’Darius when A’Darius told Tyler he was cold. Tyler then realized A’Darius was wearing only a thin zip-up jacket without a working zipper, and that he had no hat and no gloves.
Tyler offered A’Darius his team-issued warm up jacket, but he wanted to offer A’Darius and the other children something more permanent. So, Tyler asked one of the police officers present to drive him to the nearest Wal-Mart, where he filled a shopping cart with children’s coats, hats and gloves. Tyler made the purchase with his own money.
Tyler said when he returned with the winter clothes and found A’Darius, the 4-year-old’s eyes “lit up.” He said the ability to make a lasting impact was truly special, and helped the Seminoles come together as a team.
“Just being around each other and doing this stuff together, it really brings us closer together as a team,” Tyler said. “It gives a lot of perspective, and just shows how fortunate we are to be in the position that we’re in, and how easy it is for us to give back.”
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