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NY Giants Punter Steve Weatherford Recalls Ann Mara as ‘Beautiful Spirit’

NY Daily News—February 5, 2015

There Steve Weatherford was on Thursday afternoon, wearing a white tunic with a pair of tiny red wings strapped to his back, a fuzzy bow and arrow in his hands.

This was the Giants punter spending the afternoon playing Cupid at the Hospital for Special Surgery, visiting sick children in advance of Valentine’s Day. Just hours before, he’d been at the wake of Ann Mara, who had died on Super Bowl Sunday, and in some ways, his afternoon couldn’t have been a more fitting tribute to the Giants matriarch. Mara, the mother of Giants co-owner John Mara, and Weatherford had always shared a unique relationship, he said.

It’s not uncommon for NFL players to get involved in charitable efforts, but few are more involved in the community than Weatherford. The punter is a regular surprise visitor at the Hospital for Special Surgery (he stopped by as Superman on Halloween). Two years ago, the Giants gave him the Wellington Mara Award for outstanding community service.

“These kids, they’re going through things that a lot of them don’t deserve to go through,” he said. “For me to come out here and literally spend 45 minutes of my time... It’s a small investment of time for me but they’ll remember it forever.”

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