Phil Taylor holds shopping spree

Posted Dec 19, 2013

STRONGSVILLE -- Cleveland Browns defensive tackle Phil Taylor took 40 children from Denison School on a holiday shopping spree Thursday.

STRONGSVILLE -- Cleveland Browns defensive tackle Phil Taylor took to heart the lesson of giving back that his mother, Kimberly, taught him as a young child, and put that lesson into action on Thursday night.

Taylor, along with his mother, and Browns linebackers Jabaal Sheard and Craig Robertson, took 40 students from the Denison School on a holiday shopping spree.

“It’s just a way to help out with the kids, give back and things like that,” Taylor said. “It means the world to give kids an experience like this. They’ll tell their kids about this in the future, and it will help the future with kids giving back.

“(It’s) as much as I can do to give back because everybody’s not fortunate enough to be blessed to play the game of football and to make the type of money some people make.”

The 40 students were among the 400 at the school who participated in an essay contest. The importance of giving back to the community was the topic of discussion, and the winners were the best at describing why it is necessary to help others, according to Krystle George, a teacher at the Denison School.

“It’s an amazing thing because it teaches the kids that when they’re older, if they have any kind of success, that it’s important to give back to the community,” George said. “They really took that away between the essay and the experience today. It’s very heart-warming to watch these kids. This is their wish. It’s they’re dream come true tonight. It kind of chokes me up.”

Events like Thursday’s shopping spree sparked pride in Taylor’s mother.

“Even though he’s a big guy, he has a warm heart, is humble and is very appreciative of the things that he has,” Kimberly Taylor said of her son. “If there’s somebody that’s less fortunate, he’s always willing to give a helping hand. He’s a kid a heart. This type of stuff, I think he enjoys it more than the kids do. Just to see the smiles on their faces, he definitely enjoys it.

“We didn’t have everything, but as a family, we worked together and just appreciated what we did have. Those values weigh heavy because what you have today, you might not have tomorrow, so appreciate it and if you’re more fortunate than the next person, it’s better to give than it is to receive.”

Food for the event was donated by Subway Restaurants.

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