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Browns visit Cleveland Clinic Children's

Posted Dec 10, 2013

CLEVELAND -- The Cleveland Browns spent Tuesday afternoon visiting and giving gifts to the patients at Cleveland Clinic Children’s.

CLEVELAND -- The Cleveland Browns spent Tuesday spreading the holiday cheer to those in need.

Several Browns players and members of the Browns Women’s Organization gave out gifts to and visited with patients at Cleveland Clinic Children’s.

“It’s very important because they’re not able to spend Christmas like other kids,” linebacker Craig Robertson said. “Just to spread the cheer around is something that we look forward to doing every year. Being in the position that we’re in, we’re here to help. We’re idols to a lot of kids, so just being able to affect one person is a good-enough goal for me.”

Punter Spencer Lanning added, “It means the world to us. Everything we do out on the field, that’s a lot of good for the community, but when you actually get in here and get hands-on with these kids and you see these little kids’ faces light up, it does us a lot of good. It really puts everything in perspective for us. Giving back to the community, that’s what this is all about.”

Along with Robertson and Lanning, wide receiver Davone Bess, running back Chris Ogbonnaya, tight end Jordan Cameron, linebackers Darius Eubanks and Jabaal Sheard, defensive back Johnson Bademosi, and offensive linemen Shawn Lauvao and Garrett Gilkey handed out gift bags that contained blankets to help keep the patients warm during their stays in the hospital, as well as puzzles, pennants and activity books.

The members of the BWO handed out memory jars for the children to give their families.

“A lot of the women in the BWO are moms themselves or are thinking about being moms at some point,” said Shelia Chudzinski, leader of the BWO. “It’s a great opportunity for us to give some holiday joy to kids who don’t get to celebrate Christmas the same way ours do.”

Jenner Tekancic, the Browns’ director of community relations, added, “We have fans throughout the entire city and the entire nation. We understand there are fans that won’t be able to celebrate the holidays at home, so the players stepped out in full force to visit with all of the children that they possibly could at Cleveland Clinic Children’s, and the visits were amazing. It was a special time for everyone.”

Although the children and their families had smiles on their faces, the players took just as much from the visit as they gave.

“Giving gifts and receiving gifts is all fun, but this is truly what makes the holiday special,” Lanning said. “When you think they could potentially be here through the holidays and they don’t get to go home, it really means a lot to us to put a smile on these kids’ faces.”

Bess added, “It means everything, not only during the holiday season, but going out and helping people, helping kids, especially those in need. They see us catching touchdowns on Sundays, making plays. For us to come in here and take time to see them, I think it makes their day. That’s what it’s all about, giving back.

“It’s bittersweet, just knowing the circumstances and the situations that they’re in, but they motivate me and inspire me just as much as we do for them with their courage and what they’ve got to go through.”

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