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Inspirational Tuesday: #85

June 1, 2010

Though he may be known as a prima donna on the football field, Cincinnati Bengals Chad Ochocinco, formerly Chad Johnson, showed his big heart and humility at the third annual gala fundraiser for the Children Mending Hearts organization in Hollywood, California.

Ruben St. Hilaire Jr. is nine years old and lives with his mother in a homeless shelter in New York City. He recently sent a letter to Ochocinco and received an autographed jersey. After he got the jersey from his idol, Ruben sent back a touching thank you letter.

“Mr. Johnson, you really make me happy. One of my goals in my future life is to be just like you when I grow up. I wonder who was your role model when you were little? I have three role model(s) in my life that’s my mom, Mr. President Barack Obama and my favorite football player Mr. Chad Johnson. To me you are the best football player in the NFL. May God bless you and your family happy holidays.”

At the gala, Ruben was granted his dream by football great Deion Sanders: to go to a football camp. As a surprise, Ochocinco flew in and presented the certificate for camp attendance to Ruben. After Ruben read his thank you letter, his hero was introduced to Ruben’s wide-eyed surprise.

And because it was actually Ruben’s birthday as well, Ochocinco led the crowd in a verse of “Happy Birthday” for his biggest fan. Ruben said it was his best birthday yet, and I’m sure it was one of Ochocinco’s best as well.

It’s always great to see a star realize he’s a role model and then act on it in a positive way.

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