This is the season for giving. Yet, for NFL star Matt Forte, the giving started earlier this season and culminated with incredibly gracious gifts for a high school football team from an underprivileged section of Chicago.
As first reported by Fox Sports Chicago, and followed upon by MaxPreps, Forte's mentorship of the Chicago (Ill.) Tilden Career School football team carried throughout the 2012 season, beginning with the star running back spending a full day with the Tilden players, following them through classes and eventually attending their practice to work with the players.
Yet, while Forte's initial foray into mentoring the 16-member Tilden squad was a sponsored act of charity -- he appeared on behalf of Duracell's "Trust Your Power" program -- the running back didn't stop there. Instead, he maintained communication with the coaching staff at Tilden and eventually hosted the team for a lunch in downtown Chicago and surprised the entire team by giving them each their own laptops.
"Being from a privileged high school, we had computers and were able to use them," Forte told Fox. "It's only right that, if these kids don't have that type of medium to use and stuff, that I give it back so they can use it.
"It will be good to see their faces again and let them know I'm not going to just come around one time and leave."
Forte's generous act of charity hasn't gone overlooked, but it still deserves praise in a time when professional athletes are routinely lampooned for poor decision-making but often overlooked when they do contribute to society.
The players at Tilden may never reach the success Forte has had on the field, but they won't forget what he did for them anytime soon, either.