So by now you’ve probably seen the video of six-year-old Olivia Kay getting emotional after hearing the news that Edmonton Eskimos receiver Adarius Bowman had been released by the team.
What @AdariusBowman meant to our daughter Olivia in a mere 14 seconds. You may shed a tear…???? @CFL @EdmontonEsks @ChantelleKay3 #Esks #Eskimos #CFL #yeg #yegfootball #sadness #greatguy pic.twitter.com/mV05gbPII6
— PTMark (@ironfitpt) February 5, 2018
I reached out to her Dad, Mark, via Twitter to get some more information on why Olivia was so heartbroken and this is what he told me:
“She became a huge CFL fan over the years, never missing a game,” Mark wrote. “We to went numerous Adarius for Autism events, always participating where we could. I didn’t expect her to break down that bad. Kind of felt bad posting the video, but it helps show Adarius’s character.”
It looks like Olivia and Mark have developed a relationship with several of the Eskimos players. Here are a couple of the pics he sent along, including this one of Olivia getting a game ball from Ryan King and Mike Reilly.
Here’s the kicker: before Olivia’s most recent birthday, Mark reached out to Bowman to see if he’d willing to pass along birthday wishes. He got a lot more than that.
“He showed up to our HOUSE!” Mark writes. “He even brought her books as a gift! He didn’t just show up, he brought gifts, ate cake and chatted with us.”
There’s a few things we can take away from all of this. First, Adarius Bowman seems like a legitimately good dude. Second, the Kay family are seriously dedicated Eskimo fans. Finally, little Olivia Kay has every right to be seriously sad about Bowman’s departure.
This is everything that’s good about the CFL – and a perfect example of why the business of sports can be cruel on many levels.