This is the SWEETEST thing! FSU football player Travis Rudolph made a beyond heartfelt gesture to an autistic, middle school student when he sat down to join the boy for lunch. And the mom of the 6th grader, who normally eats alone, couldn’t hold back tears when she saw what Travis had done — read her emotional words here.
It’s no secret that middle school can be tough, especially for kids who are perceived as “different,” like Bo Paske, who’s an autistic student at Tallahassee’s Montford Middle School. But on on Aug. 30, Bo’s mom, Leah, “didn’t have to worry” if her “sweet boy ate alone.” And it’s all thanks to Florida State University football player Travis Rudolph, 20.
A handful of FSU football players, including Travis, visited Bo’s school that day, and the middle schooler ended up making a new friend when Travis, who’s a junior receiver, decided to join him for lunch. Travis noticed that Bo was eating all by himself, and so he grabbed a slice of pizza and asked if he could join him, according to Daily Mail.
“I asked could I sit with him and he said, ‘Sure, why not?’ He told me his name was Bo, how much he loves Florida State. And we went from there,” Travis told Seminoles.com. “I was just a kid not too long ago. And I remember what the impact was when I saw guys that played in college football and the NFL coming back to us. So I felt like maybe I could change someone’s life or just make someone a better person and want to be great just like me, even better.”
Leah shared a picture of the moment on Facebook, along with some extremely heartfelt words. She explained that she thinks Bo’s autism in some ways shields him from noticing he does not get invited to birthday parties anymore and that he eats lunch alone. “It’s one of my daily questions for him. Was there a time today you felt sad? Who did you eat lunch with today? Sometimes the answer is a classmate, but most days it’s nobody,” Leah wrote online.
“Those are the days I feel sad for him, but he doesn’t seem to mind. He is a super sweet child, who always has a smile and hug for everyone he meets.” Leah added that she did not know what exactly made “this incredibly kind man” join her son for lunch, but that she was “happy to say that it will not soon be forgotten.” Aw!
“This is one day I didn’t have to worry if my sweet boy ate lunch alone, because he sat across from someone who is a hero in many eyes,” the proud mom concluded. “Travis Rudolph thank you so much, you made this momma exceedingly happy, and have made us fans for life!”
Tell us, HollywoodLifers — were you brought to tears by this super sweet story?