WINNING SMILES: Solder, left, and Welch, with patient Elsa Nuñez
New England Patriots Nate Solder and Brandon Deaderick – as well as former Patriot Thomas Welch, who signed with the Buffalo Bills Nov. 17 – made a surprise visit Nov. 8 to patients at MassGeneral Hospital for Children and the MGH Cancer Center’s Infusion Unit. “Gosh you’re huge,” said Thomas Coye, 16, as Solder and Welch autographed a football they brought for him. The players spoke with Coye about his role as a defensive end for the Georgetown High School football team. In the Yawkey Center for Outpatient Care, Johnny Koval, 11, gave the players tips for an upcoming New York Jets game and asked what colleges they had attended. “I bet you don’t remember who your teachers are, you get hit so hard,” Koval said. Solder, Welch and Deaderick laughed and assured Koval that had never happened to them. But Deaderick, a defensive lineman, claimed to hit the hardest. In the Cancer Center’s Infusion Unit, tears came to the eyes of Kathryn Statires as she described sitting with her husband and son every week to watch the Patriots play. The visit was especially poignant for Statires, since the treatment was her last. “This made my day,” she said.
Read more articles from the 11/18/11 Hotline issue.