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New York Giants’ Steve Weatherford Provides Heartfelt Gesture to Dying Fan, Family

August 9th, 2013 at 6:30 AM
By Doug Rush

New York Giants punter Steve Weatherford has always been known as a very active person through social media, whether it be on his Twitter or Facebook account. Some players decide not to interact with the fans at all, but Weatherford does, which already makes him a well-liked person by NFL fans.

'Steve Weatherford of the New York Giants' photo (c) 2012, Marianne O'Leary - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

And an act that he recently provided for one family, and one fan in particular, might not only have won them over, but won over the hearts of fans all over the country once the story became public.

Diane Brennan had always followed Weatherford through Facebook and always thought he was a really nice person because of his interaction with the fans, and she wanted to contact the Giants punter about a potential favor to her ailing father, Joseph Brennan, who was dying from Stage 4 lung cancer and didn't have much time left from the illness. So as she recalled to Paul Schwartz of the New York Post, she deiced to reach out to him.

“He just seems like such a caring person," she said. “I don’t know, for some reason I just felt the need to [message] him, I can’t explain why."

Through Weatherford's personal Facebook account, Brennan asked him if she could send her father's Giants hat to him and if he would be willing to sign him and return it to them. Weatherford was happy to oblige the family's wish.

“He contacted me right away and said, ‘Whatever you want and I will get it back to you as soon as I can,’ " Diane recalled.

Brennan got the hat back on July 26th along with a hand-written note from Weatherford, and she promptly gave it to her dad, who at the time was in the hospital and not doing well from the illness, as she recalled. He was hallucinating at times, but she said once they put the hat on him, he knew what it was, smiled and cheered up.

Sadly, Joseph Brennan passed away on July 30th at the age of 79. He was buried with a Giants helmet, wearing a favorite Giants T-shirt underneath his suit. The family members all wore Giants pins. Diane made sure a picture of Steve Weatherford and the hat he signed were on display at the funeral and the priest went out of his way to mention Weatherford’s kindness. Weatherford couldn't believe that he was even mentioned at the funeral, much less a big part of it.

“I’m thinking to myself this literally took me five minutes and this guy’s lived for 79 years and I’m in his homily?" Weatherford said.

In one last act of kindness and generosity by Weatherford, the Giants punter had Brennan, her son Christopher, daughters Caitlin and Meagan, husband David, her brother Joseph, sister Lynn and mother, Marilyn travel from Rhode Island to the Giants training facility and attend the team's practice as special guests of his. With the hat and having the whole family come to New Jersey to see the Giants up close is something the Brennan family will never forget.

"Steve went way beyond what I ever could have imagined," Diane said. "We're such a humble family. My father’s a very humble man, and for [Weatherford] to take time out of his busy schedule to do anything, we're just average people, just fans that asked for a simple favor and he’s gone way beyond what we ever expected."

In a time where the NFL has taken a hit publicly from the events surrounding Aaron Hernandez's murder accusations and Riley Cooper's racist comments, it truly is heart-warming to see that there are great people in the NFL like Weatherford, who would take the time out of his day and preparation from the season, to give some hope and happiness to a family who went through a difficult time and likely, made a dying fan's last days on Earth very special.

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Tags: Football, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Steve Weatherford

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6 Responses to “New York Giants’ Steve Weatherford Provides Heartfelt Gesture to Dying Fan, Family”

  1.  James Stoll says:

    Good for steve. Giants once again are head of the class in overall character (maybe it will rub off on will hill one day)

    If it is anything other than occasional, the thought of Tuck at LB is depressing. At 30 they are going to convert him to LB? Please.

    If Jenkins is the next guy up at DE right now with Tuck and JPP out that either means there will be a lot more 3-4 than we think, or Tracy/Ojomo are really under-performing.

    Giving that the ones are going 12-14 plays according to TC, and with Torrain out, Saturday ought to be a huge opportunity for Michael Cox. Excited to see what he has. From the last interview posted on giants.com it sounded like he may return KO’s as well.

    As many have stated, I would rather see the Giants ultimately keep Nassib and release Carr, which I think could well happen. I’d prefer to see Nassib earlier than later so that he gets better competition, but understand will have to be satisfied with mid-third to 4th quarter play. Still, eager to see how he looks.

    Now the question is can I find some place to watch the game. Anyone know whether it is a national telecast or a good on-line streaming site?

    •  rlhjr says:

      REPOST:

      It’s no secret which of the Giant DE are agile/fast enough to be a difference maker standing up in passing situations. Let’s just say Tuck isn’t one of them now or ever.

      If they want to utilize Tuck at a position other than DE, his strength and size would dictate he go to DT. Like he did in 07.

      This again shows the lack of imagination displayed by Fewell. And TC should know better than to try and hide a player in this fashion. Big Blue is 100 percent on this one.
      They are creating a situation where the defensive captain is not among the best on the team at his position. You can only talk so much in football. There comes a time you have to play. Tuck doesn’t seem to be able to answer that call any longer.

      I really love the fact that Coughlin in this day and age maintains loyalty. However, once Harry Carson stated to slide, Parcells was quick to sit him down and tell him the truth about his play. When you really care about a player, then you must tell him when it’s over. Now if the player simply asks for one more year, one more chance perhaps you can work with him. But this can not drag on for Justin Tuck or DD.

  2.  rlhjr says:

    Not even sure what affiliate (NBC/CBS/FOX) carries the Giants preseason game vs. the Steelers. However, due to furlough, I’ll have most of the day today to find a feed. (got to hit the gym this morning) When I do, I’ll post it.

    Truth is someone in this crew already knows and will put it up sometime today.

  3.  rlhjr says:

    Because the Giant and Steeler organizations are so close (Rooney Mara) you can expect the Steelers to try and take advantage of the Giants weak points.
    Conversely, the Giants will attack the Steelers in the same manner.

    This wont be like playing the dirt bag team in green who stay in our basement.

  4.  Aziz Mohamed says:

    The Steelers game is going to be televised on NFL Network.

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