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David Tyree and Former Teammates Bowl Support Local Organizations

New York, NY–- David Tyree gathered some of his friends and former colleagues on Tuesday night, as he hosted his third annual charity bowling event in conjunction with Children of the City and The Legacy Center. Tyree and the two New York-based service organizations hosted fans and supporters in an event which celebrated the difference being made in local communities in regards to youth education and assistance of families in need. It also gave those hoping to get behind these causes a chance to meet some of their favorite athletes while at the same time rolling some strikes, spares and gutter balls.

“I think the number one thing that we really need right now is hope,” said Tyree, whose impact and influence has apparently not decreased since his retirement from the NFL and even further removed from his notorious 2007 Super Bowl helmet catch. “I think that because of various circumstances that we find ourselves in –- whether it’s the economy or crime –- the fact is that life is hard and it presents challenges, road bumps and obstacles, and if we have a hope that means we have an anchor.”

Tyree partnered with Children of the City before he became a New York Giants hero, and it was this particular organization to which he donated most of his time directly after he became a local celebrity, and they have stuck together as that celebrity has faded gradually over time.

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“We have kids that I reached when I first started 33 years ago. One young boy that was in a horrible home situation, he’s now a VP at Goldman Sachs. So, we’ve seen a lot of long-term success stories. So, it’s great and it’s great to have the support of the Giants.”
-Joyce Mattera, Founder and Executive Director of Children of the City
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While fans marveled at the presence of these athletes donning bowling shoes and Tyree expressed his gratitude for his charity co-sponsors and the evening’s donors, the athletes that had donated their time praised Tyree for his character and devotion to help others.

“A great guy and beautiful person” said Plaxico Burress, a former Giants receiver who won the Super Bowl alongside Tyree during the year of the famous catch. Burress said that during his impactful yet relatively short time playing alongside Tyree that he got to know him for the person he is, not just his talents. “He’s always going to be honest with you, he’s always going to be up front. I respect him and his wife, his family… everything he’s about.”

Plaxico Burress, former Giants receiver stands with his family and Joyce Mattera, Founder and Executive Director of the Children of the City at the David Tyree Charity Bowl 2014.
Plaxico Burress, former Giants receiver stands with his family and Joyce Mattera, Founder and Executive Director of the Children of the City at the David Tyree Charity Bowl 2014.

Giants punter Steve Weatherford is a current ambassador on behalf of the team and echoed the thoughts on his former teammate. He also reflected on what it’s like to be such a visible figure in the community, using his position to help the causes he does.

“I never thought that I would ever make it to the National Football League and it’s been nine years later,” Weatherford said. “I’m a Super Bowl champion, I’ve achieved more athletically then I ever thought I would, and I guess I just feel blessed. And I think that by me getting up with different charities and going to different events and blessing others with my time, with my efforts, with my energy, I think that for me I’m playing with house money, because I never thought I’d make it this far.”

David Tyree and Steve Weatherford at the David Tyree Charity Bowl 2014.
David Tyree and Steve Weatherford at the David Tyree Charity Bowl 2014.

Tyree’s story is that of someone who once had to choose between two very different paths, forgoing a dangerous and drug-filled lifestyle for what would eventually be great success, and this is a main reason he selected his charitable partners. Representatives from Children of the City told stories of youth they’d once intervened with in abusive homes and hopeless educational settings and corrected their lives. The Legacy Center referenced their latest campaign to help the city’s high volume of homeless citizens, particularly children.

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“The Legacy Center just wants to help people in their situation, not just in their situation, but out of their situation. So to me, partnership is the key to that. There’s no way we can do it on our own. There’s 55,000 homeless–- 22,000 of those are kids. So, partnering with organizations like Children of the City, partnering with organizations like the NY Giants and other organizations that we partner with it’s just vital to what we do.” -Jordan Durso, Executive Director of The Legacy Center
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Tyree spent very little of his time during the evening bowling, and much more of it socializing and thanking everyone for coming, validating their high opinions of him. This represents his post-football career well, as he has spent much less time bowling and relaxing than he has reaching out to others. Whether it is as an ordained Pastor or through his position with the league’s player engagement program, he manages to seek out those in need of what he has to offer and be where they need him to be.

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“I wasn’t supposed to finish junior high school. I finished high school with the highest diploma you can get and I just got accepted into college. Children of the City taught me that education is something that you can get and people can never take from you.”
-Rosa, Impacted by Children of the City
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As a player, the challenge was to be available for as much of the time as possible, so when the most opportune moment came he could be there to catch it. Now, his availability is spread thin between the league that once gave him this platform, the causes he supports so strongly, the disciples he mentors, and of course his family, of which he has seven children. It may be tough to juggle, just as it is to bowl with one hand and shake hands with the other, but Tyree manoeuvres these obstacles just as he once did defenders. He knows that growing is a part of his journey, but it is one that will involve much more teaching as well.

To find out more about David Tyree, Children of the City or the Legacy Center see below:
http://www.davidtyree85.com
http://www.childrenofthecity.com
http://www.tlcnyc.org

Gabe Katz

A journalism enthusiast – sports media in particular – Gabe has interviewed Super Bowl champions Raheem Brock and Chris Canty, and rising star Bengals linebacker Vincent Rey. He’s covered organizations and events affiliated with the NY Rangers, NY Knicks, and NBA Cares. He has also written articles featuring NY Yankees’ Robinson Cano and CC Sabathia, Tina Charles (WNBA), Deron William’s Point of Hope Foundation (NBA), and the foundations of Torrey Smith and Ryan Kerrigan (NFL). After graduating from Temple University where he received a degree in communications, he had two subsequent positions in news, first as an online editor and contributor for a Philadelphia sports web site start-up and later as a multimedia content provider at a newspaper in the Philadelphia suburbs. He now lives in New York as a freelance journalist and remains an avid sports fan.

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