DENVER (KDVR) — Denver Broncos player Dalton Risner stepped in to help a local 12-year-old going through a tough time after his stepdad committed suicide this summer.
“I feel like Dalton is a role model for me,” Jaidden Gibbs said.
Jaidden attended a football camp through the nonprofit organization “A Precious Child” back in June.
“A lot of these families don’t have the money to go to football camps. When I was a kid I didn’t have that opportunity either,” Risner said.
Risner was one of the NFL players hosting the camp and said right away he knew Jaidden was a special kid.
“There was one kid out there, who stood out to me the entire time. He was nice to everyone and a complete stud on the field,” Risner said.
After the day at camp, Risner was able to meet Jaidden’s mom and siblings. Risner said something in him pushed him to ask Jaidden’s family to dinner.
“He picked Texas Roadhouse. So we went to Texas Roadhouse,” Risner said.
While at dinner with Jaidden’s entire family, he learned that Jaidden’s stepdad had killed himself just weeks before.
“I thought he probably needed a mentor in his life. A good male role model,” Risner said.
So before leaving dinner, to help distract Jaidden from the recent tragedy, Risner challenged him to step it up in school.
“He told me if I got good grades he would take me to a football game,” Jaidden said.
Sure enough, by the end of the semester, Jaidden had all As and Bs. So Risner followed through with his deal and got Jaidden and his mom tickets to Sunday’s Broncos game against the Detroit Lions.
Jaidden and his mom will also be able to meet the players before the game.
“Actually we both have never been to a football game let alone the Broncos,” Monica Green, Jaidden’s mom said.
Both Risner and Jaidden’s family agree this isn’t a one-time thing. They are now friends for life.
“I think it’s important it’s not Dalton Risner becoming a part of their life. Jaidden and his family have become part of my life and I hope to have that forever,” Risner said.