DENVER (CBS4) – Following Eric Decker’s third touchdown in Kansas City on Sunday, the Broncos wide receiver handed the ball to a Broncos fan in a white jersey in a sea of red.
Decker went on to score a fourth touchdown after the kind gesture, but the fan who received the ball went on to have a far more heartwarming story.
Broncos fan Cody Leonard of Mount Pleasant, Iowa, returned home from Arrowhead Stadium elated about receiving the touchdown ball when he learned at school on Monday that his grandfather would not make it through the day, KOA Radio reports.
“I went home, I went to see him, I shared the ball with him, told him the story,” said Cody.
“He didn’t wake up at all Monday, but I got to share that story, be with my family, tell them that story and bring some smiles into a room full of tears until he finally passed away Monday night.”
Asked if his grandfather was able to appreciate the emotional moment, “I’d like to believe he did,” he said.
Leonard, who has Denver roots and plans on returning to Colorado following his graduation in May, said he wrote a letter to the Denver Post to thank Decker for his kind gesture and share the heartfelt story with others.
Decker and the Broncos responded.
The Broncos wide receiver said he will gladly sign the ball for Cody, and he took to Twitter to share the story with others online.