Bo Jackson, for sports fans who grew up in the 80s, is hard to forget. Bo Jackson was an amazing athlete who excelled in track, baseball, and football. Many believed he was a hero. Now they are able to justify this view yet again.
The Associated Press reported that Bo flew to Texas just days after May 24th's grisly murders of 19 students and two teachers.
With an unnamed companion and co-contributor, Bo was there to assist Uvalde families who were suffering from the devastation brought on Robb Elementary School.
According to according to the AP, Bo now reveals “himself as one of the…donors who covered (funeral) costs…”
A nearly 60-year-old grandfather and the father of three, says he can't get over this heartbreaking experience:
“It’s just not right for parents to bury their kids. It’s just not right. … I know every family there probably works their butts off just to do what they do. … The last thing they needed was to shell out thousands of dollars for something that never should have happened.”
Bo handed Governor Greg Abbott a check for $170,000. The check was reported as an anonymous gift when originally given.
“We didn't want media,” Bo says. “No one knew we were there.”
“Abbott’s office said Jackson’s money was “quickly directed to cover funeral costs” through OneStar, a nonprofit created to further volunteerism and community service in Texas, including Uvalde relief efforts.”
Abbott praised the athlete:
“The true spirit of our nation is Americans lifting up one another in times of need and hardship. In a truly selfless act, Bo covered all funeral expenses for the victims’ families so they would have one less thing to worry about as they grieved.”
The day after the murders, Bo Tweeted:
“America…let’s please stop all the nonsense. Please pray for all victims. If you hear something, say something. We aren’t supposed to bury our children. I’m praying for all of the families around the country who have lost loved ones to senseless shootings. This cannot continue.”
When asked what he meant by “this cannot continue,” he tried to stay clear of politics:
“I don’t want to turn this into anything (but) what it is. I was just trying (with the donation) to put a little sunshine in someone’s cloud, a very dark cloud. … The last thing you want to hear is there’s an active shooter in your child’s school. It’s happening everywhere now.”
For those who aren't familiar with Jackson's significance in the history of sports, check out Biography.com.
Recruited by the New York Yankees before he was out of high school, Jackson decided instead to attend Auburn University.
In school, he led his baseball team to victory; became a football MVP and Sugar Bowl champ; and qualified for the US Olympic team in track and field.
Going professional in 1986, he played for the Kansas City Royals, the Chicago White Sox and the California Angels. During his time in baseball, he was the 1989 All-Star Game MVP, achieved four 20-home-run seasons, and tied the record for most consecutive at-bat home runs with four…
Jackson signed…with the L.A. Raiders in 1987. In his first season, he ran a record-breaking 221-yard rushing performance on Monday Night Football. He spent four seasons in the game before an injury sidelined Jackson in 1991.
With a combined strength, size, speed, and agility, the athlete’s story is unlike any other. He didn't really have to dodge opponents because he sped over them. He could also capture a fly ball high above the wall and throw the ball to get someone out at home.
Bo has an attraction to Uvalde:
“Jackson said he felt a personal connection to the city he’s driven through many times. Uvalde has been a regular stop for a bite to eat or groceries before a long drive farther west to visit a friend’s ranch on hunting trips.”
“It was his familiarity with the feel of Uvalde’s Main Street, leafy town square and the people he’d met on those stops that touched his heart when…news (of the shooting) broke…”
He doesn’t even know any of the townspeople.
“Uvalde is a town that sticks in your mind. Just the name,” Jackson said. “I don’t know a soul there. It just touched me. … It’s the children. … It’s the children. … It’s the children,” Jackson said, pausing before each repetition to gather himself. “If it doesn’t bother you, something’s wrong with you.”
How often do “heroes” actually earn that title? Many believe Bo Jackson has. Jackson was born with athletic ability. However, compassion for others is a greater thing.
With many narcissists in the major leagues, compassion is more important than ever before.