Two shades of Knight visit children's hospital
Published: Friday, December 18, 2009
Updated: Thursday, January 7, 2010 12:01
ST. PETERSBURG — Knights from different schools showed chivalry Friday as they visited All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg.
Players and cheerleaders from UCF and Rutgers University joined forces and handed out autographed posters, foam swords, bandanas and pom-poms to children in the intensive care unit and the bone marrow transplant area of the hospital.
"It just gives you that good feeling," said senior wide receiver Rocky Ross. "It's hard to explain. Any time you can bring a little joy into someone's life makes you feel good about what's going on."
The visit was one of the planned pre-bowl events throughout the week.
While the teams split up and visited different floors, both school's mascots met in the hallways and posed for photos.
The group of UCF players and cheerleaders were joined by Mike Alstott, former fullback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
"When we all come together we can make a difference in the community and other people's lives," Alstott said.
Alstott said that while members of the athletics community might play different spots, they all understand the need to come together and help out fellow human beings.
"We can come visit these patients one-on-one and help the take their mind off of the situation at hand for a couple of minutes at least, and put a smile on their faces and light their spirit a little bit," Alstott said.
All Children's Hospital is a not-for-profit pediatric medical center. Ann Miller, media relations manager for the hospital, said visits from the St. Petersburg Bowl players will be the highlight of the families who got gifts and talked to the Knights.
"It's a thing that makes the day different than the day before," "Sometimes with parents a kids who are going through a really tough time, this may be the day-breaker that gets them going. It will be the thing they talk about and remember."
Senior defensive tackle Torrell Troup said that he is glad that UCF schedules charity events before bowl games.
"It was a great experience, meeting some of the kids and brightening up their day a little but," Troup said.