J.J. Watt collects a prestigious honor


The nation watched in horror last fall as Hurricane Harvey closed in on the Gulf Coast region. The catastrophic storm destroyed everything in its path and displaced families from their homes.

Rainfall was the primary culprit for much of the damage.

Houston, Texas was one of the larger cities impacted by the storm, with many locations receiving approximately 30 inches of precipitation. Portions of Texas even received a devastating 60 inches of precipitation.

With much of the city crippled after the storm, Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt couldn't sit idly by as the city he called home for seven season was being destroyed.

The defensive lineman put a call out on social media for help from his followers as he aimed to raise money for the people of Houston.

When Watt announced he was beginning a foundraiser for Harvey victims the donations grew quickly. Growing from 270,000 to 1,000,000 and eventually growing to $37 million dollars with the help of 200,000 donors.

"There are not enough words to thank you all for your generosity," Watt wrote shortly after the fundraising closed. "If there is one thing that I have taken away from these last few weeks, it is the reassurance of how much good is out there in our world.

When times are the toughest, humanity stands at its strongest and you have all helped to prove that emphatically. On Friday, Sept. 15 at 5 p.m. CT, we will complete the fundraising portion of our efforts to dedicate our time to ensuring every dollar is put to work for the people in the devastated areas in and around Houston.

There are many places you could have donated your hard-earned money and I'm honored you have chosen to join this effort to support the people who were affected most by Hurricane Harvey. Please keep this spirit of helping one another alive. The world is a better place when we all take care of each other."

Because of his tireless work, Baylor University announced it is awarding an honorary doctrine to J.J. Watt on May 29th during Baylor's College of Medicine's commencement ceremony.

Despite only playing five games in the 2017 season, Watt's trophy case and accolades continue to grow. He was awarded the Sports Illustrated "Sportsperson of the Year" and the NFL's Walter Payton Man of the Year award.

Houston Emergency Medical Services director Dr. David Persse will also be honored during the ceremony. Watt has played in eight games over the past two seasons, after injuring his leg last season he is expected to return in time for the start of the 2018 season.


    ©2020 by Ralph Schudel

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