by DC Livers Special to BlackSportswriter.com
(www.BlackSportswriter.com) – What was supposed to be an ordinary morning hanging out on the set of ABC’s “Good Morning America” studio in New York’s Times Square turned into a life changing experience that I will likely never forget.
NFL star Drew Brees, coach Sean Payton made Jarrius an “honorary Saint” and invited him and his father New Orleans Saints super fan Jarrius Robertson.
“So we’re going to sign Jarrius today to a contract to become a New Orleans Saint,” Payton said. “Today, right here, right there in New York. Right here. There you go. There you go. Sign it.”
Jarrius, who looked visibly shocked, quickly took the pen and signed the contract.
“You don’t have to tell me twice!” Jarrius exclaimed.
Payton, who was joined on video by Cam Jordan, even had a special assignment for Jarrius: He’ll be the team’s social media correspondent. His first assignment was to interview Robin Roberts. He did amazing.
“Heck, we’re gonna put you in charge of all the media,” Payton told Jarrius, causing him to do a dance. “You’re just gonna be in charge.”
Jarrius, who has a chronic liver disease that affects his physical growth similar to Gary Coleman so while he looks 7, he is actually 14. Without a liver transplant, Jarrius will die. When I heard that, I broke down and was pretty much inconsolable that is until Michael Strahan bee-lined to me during the commercial break and gave me a kiss and hug.
Jarrius came over to me and hugged me. He was actually comforting me like it was me who was diagnosed with a life threatening disease. His dad gave me a purple jelly bracelet with the words “Do It For JJ,” in gold. I put it on and haven’t taken it off since.
Jarrius and his dad first met the Saints in 2015 during a team visit to Ochsner Hospital for Children, where the child was being treated. He’s currently on a waiting list for a liver transplant, “Good Morning America” reported.
Jarrius had no way of knowing that my own and child and I have been fighting for her life. She was born premature as a result of domestic violence. She’s had medical setbacks and recently we became the victims of a crime when someone who wanted to harass us called in a false and malicious call to the hotline.
Our story – much like Jarrius – has caught national and international headlines and has been featured in over 200 media outlets. I’ve been working closely with lawmakers in Albany, NY to #PassJoseesLaw to close the loopholes in New York City that allows abusers to track down their victims using CPS. Soon, I’ll be speaking in Congress to make the law national.
What Jarrius didn’t know was I’d agreed to come to GMA that morning to get my mind off the stress of such a daunting fight. I wasn’t prepared for what happened instead. It was like a miracle. Jarrius is like my personal angel reminding me that I can and will get through this terrible time. So I wear his bracelet as a reminder that everyday I’m doing this for “JJ” Josee and Jarrius.
I’ll be meeting with leaders from the president-elect’s team soon to discuss reforming CPS and I’ve been named an ambassador for Care Bears where I work exclusively with foster children to give them hope and a plushie to hug until they can be reunited with their own parents.
When things get tough, I think of Jarrius’ beautiful smile and Josee’s amazing heart and I can hold on a little longer. I have to continue to be use my platform to tell Josee’s and Jarrius’ stories because I’ve never met two kids more amazing than the two of them.