Thursday, April 17, 2008

Javelinas visit Driscoll Children's Hospital

Corpus Christi Caller Article
by Stuart Duncan
Ashley Suggs, 13, couldn't help but smile after receiving an autographed media guide from Porky, Texas A&M University-Kingsville's mascot, Wednesday afternoon at Driscoll Children's Hospital.

Her tonsillitis hasn't given her much to grin about lately, her mother, Kathryn Suggs, said.

"It was just good to see her smile again," Kathryn Suggs said.

Ashley, of Portland, was one of several hospital patients visited by 18 members of the A&M-Kingsville football team.

"It was awesome," Ashley said.

Nathan Navarro, 14, of Ingleside, also received a miniature blue football that the players passed out to the patients.

"I'm going to go play with (the mini ball) whenever I'm able to," a smiling Nathan said, his left arm in a still-white cast.

Linda Leyba was happy that players stopped by to visit her 6-year-old daughter, Zoey, at Driscoll.

"It's great, because so many kids look up to those football players -- we really appreciated their visit," Linda said, while Zoey shied away from questions.

Javelinas junior offensive lineman Markeith Wesley had visited the hospital with team members in the past.

Wesley recently requested that the team visit the hospital again, to which first-year coach Bo Atterberry obliged.

"This really touched my heart," Wesley said with a smile. "These kids are battling some serious things that we don't even know about. So to be able to see their happy faces -- it's wonderful. We enjoy doing it -- we just love it."

While the visit was Atterberry's first, he said it probably won't be his last.

"We're excited to be here," Atterberry said. "It was a great opportunity to put some smiles on some faces and allow our players to come together. We'd be more than happy to come back as much as we can."

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