"I'll be Home for Christmas"
Despite the chill in the air and the snow on the ground, the Ravens brought warm wishes and holiday greetings to the patients and staff at Union Memorial Hospital on Tuesday (12/2). Tight end L.J. Smith and twelve cheerleaders visited with patients and their families, signed autographs and posed for pictures. One ardent Ravens fan was so excited to see Smith, she had him call her daughter. Hopefully the Christmas cheer the Ravens brought will lead to speedy recoveries for everyone so they can enjoy the holidays from the comfort of their home.
The Gift of Giving
Although no sleighs or chimneys were involved, the Ravens were able to help deliver presents to families throughout Baltimore. Linebacker Antwan Barnes, wide receiver Mark Clayton, tight end Davon Drew and linebackers Dannell Ellerbe*and Jameel McClain *joined the Salvation Army for their gift distribution efforts. In addition to helping sort the items, the players donned holiday headgear while mingling, signing autographs and posing for pictures with the crowd.
A Holiday Party – Ravens Style
For 50 Baltimore youth in need, Christmas came a little early. Stepping in as the holiday elves this year were cornerback Domonique Foxworth and safety Tom Zbikowski. Participants enjoyed a festive party at the ESPN Zone complete with games, gifts, Old Navy jackets and special appearances by Miss Maryland (Simone Feldman), Santa's biggest elf (tackle Joe Reitz) and "reindeer Sam" (punter Sam Koch).
After dinner was eaten and gifts were given, the kids ventured to Barnes & Noble where they each received a $50 gift card courtesy of Foxworth. On hand to help navigate the shelves and find the perfect book for winter break were Ravens cheerleaders, running back Matt Lawrence and nose tackle Kelly Talavou. The evening was a great success with memories that would melt the heart of any Scrooge in Baltimore.
Quarterback John Beck, and members of the defensive line including Justin Bannan, Dwan Edwards, Kelly Gregg, Brandon McKinney, Haloti Ngata, Trevor PryceandKelly Talavou made their way onto Santa's nice list by adopting several families from the Baltimore area this holiday season. Although they were "making seasons bright" in a subtle way, their impact is felt in our community, especially by the deserving families that received a little something extra in their stockings and under their tree.