In honor of the NFL's Salute to Service Month and the Texans' Salute to Service and First Responders Appreciation Day this Sunday, FB Andrew Beck, DT Kurt Hinish and DE Adedayo Odeleye visited veterans in the hospital on Nov. 14. Beck wrote about the visit that was especially meaningful to him.
On Tuesday, Kurt, Dayo and I had the opportunity to visit veterans in the hospital for Salute to Service Month. This was my second visit there since I moved to Houston and it was just as fun as the last. I grew up in a military family and to be able to go and give back to former servicemen and women is something I'm passionate about.
When we got to the hospital, we saw a few patients in their rooms on the palliative care unit. They are fighting the toughest battles, but we were able to bring some smiles to their faces, even if it was just for a few minutes.
We headed to the activity room next, which was full of veterans who welcomed us with open arms. We posed for pictures, signed autographs and shared stories with everyone around the room. The first man I talked to told me that he keeps up with the Texans and told me our quarterback is doing a great job throwing the ball down the field. I agreed with him and thanked him for rooting for us on Sundays.
I found myself at a table where three gentleman who are longtime Texans fans sat. One of them said they were from England so I brought Dayo over so they could meet. Then there was Otis from Sugarland who had us all laughing. He served in the Army and talked a lot about his family. I shared stories about my own family and took his life advice to heart.
After we left the activity room, we had a surprise for a very deserving veteran named Morgan. He told us he, like so many of the people we met on Tuesday, has spent a lot of time in the hospital. We gave him and his recreational therapist, Jason, tickets to this weekend's game. They were pumped. This will be Morgan's first Texans game and he said he can't wait to watch us play in-person.
Sunday's game will be even more special to me because my dad will be here to watch me play in Houston for the first time. He is a Major General in the U.S. Army and has served our country for more than 30 years. I'm so proud to be his son, and I'm grateful for his service and for all who serve our country every day, but especially this week.