Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Kindness suits a 5th grade football team. A story of anti-bullying.

What a gift! Instead of joining the bullies, this school made a child feel accepted and loved.
It was a touching moment for all when a fifth-grade football team stood up for their special-needs waterboy, 6 year old Danny, who was bullied for wearing suits to school... by dressing just like him!

They played great defense and showed him their full support.

Danny Keefe, a first-grader from Bridgewater, Massachusetts, who suffers from a speech impediment, become the target of bullies who called him a baby and ridiculed him for wearing a suit and tie to school.

So, members of the Williams Intermediate School fifth-grade football team, where Danny is a waterboy, banded together to send a clear message to the boy's tormentors by dressing up like him and holding a Danny Appreciation Day.

When Danny was a week old, he suffered a brain hemorrhage that resulted in apraxia of speech - a disorder in which a person has trouble saying what he or she wants to say correctly and consistently.

Danny is also  the fiercely loved water boy for the fifth-grade football team.

Instead of lashing out at the bullies, the boys decided to use their football skills to good use and planned a great defense. They planned on honoring Danny and one day all 45 fifth-graders arrived in school and surrounded the dashing 6-year-old Danny, all dressed in jackets and ties.

'This is the best day ever,' a beaming Danny exclaimed as the older kids chanted his name in the library. The first-grader's father, Mark Keefe, who is the assistant coach of the Badgers, told the fifth-graders that they should be proud of themselves.

The children said that the 6-year-old is part of their ‘band of brothers,’ and they were not going to let anyone bully him. ‘We thought we would all come to school like Danny and sponsor Danny to show Danny that we love him...that we love him very much,’ said one of the 11-year-olds, wiping his eyes.

When the rest of the school saw this outpouring of love, they joined in. Kudos to the parents and teachers of these extraordinary young people! 

If more classmates supported children who were being bullied and showed their love and appreciation, the bullies would lose their power. These children would feel accepted instead of intimidated.

A simple act of kindness can become the gift of a lifetime.

A simple act of kindness can become the gift of a lifetime.


Your day just got a lot better!

Nancy Burban 2014

Funeral fund

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