It's not everyday you get to meet a Hall of Fame quarterback. The Mohawk Valley Challengers, a flag football and cheerleading team made up of kids with special needs had their day with former Buffalo Bill Jim Kelly and the moment will melt your heart.

Sunday, March 24th Cooperstown Connection and Gentlemen’s Corner Barbershop hosted an event with Jim Kelly at Sangertown Square Mall in New Hartford. The Mohawk Valley Challengers coach contacted Cooperstown Connection about fitting the team in for a quick photo. "We expected a quick photo op and that would be that but Jim went above and beyond," says coach Caleb Lewis. "He hugged, kissed, and high fived all of our kids and made them feel amazing. One of our players was having a sensory overload issue from all the chaos and started to cry. Jim wrapped her up in his arms to comfort her until she stopped."

Louise Slater
Louise Slater

"He’s a class act. Even though Jim is undergoing surgery for cancer, he still took the time to do that for his fans and raise money for the American Cancer Society."

It's hard to say who was more moved by the moment; the kids or Jim. "The folks at Cooperstown Connection told us Jim was in tears walking to center court after meeting the kids," says Lewis. "It was emotional for all of us."


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