Say what you will about Tim Tebow's fitness to play quarterback for the New York Jets, the man knows how to spread some happiness.
We take you to Clifton Park in upstate New York, where 17-year-old Matt Hardy of Shenendehowa High School was hospitalized in a two-car accident that took the lives of two of his classmates. A fourth teenager, Bailey Wind, was also injured. The driver of the other car, who reportedly swerved in front of the students' car, failed alcohol tests, according to local reports.
The teens' friends started two Twitter hashtags, #TebowCallMatt and #MissyCallBailey, seeking to get Tebow and Olympic swimmer Missy Franklin to call their injured classmates. The Tebow hashtag went viral, trending worldwide, while the Franklin one had a similarly strong reach. The Tebow hashtag had 106,290 mentions, while the Franklin one had 42,483.
And the Twitter campaign paid off. Monday night, Tebow did indeed call Matt Hardy in his hospital room. Tebow tweeted, "Thanks to everyone who got #TebowCallMatt trending & helped connect us. Matt truly inspired me. God bless y'all."
Franklin also tried to reach Bailey, and tweeted the following message: "Called Bailey and left her a voicemail. Would still love to talk to her. Bailey and her community are in my thoughts and prayers #staystrong"
Tebow and Franklin, like most celebrities, are besieged with Twitter requests both sincere and inane. It's good to see that they were able to find a justified cause, and here's hoping their calls will bring some measure of comfort to a devastated community.
-Follow Jay Busbee on Twitter at @jaybusbee.-