Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
In one of my fantasy football leagues, one owner, Everett, has never missed sending in his starting lineup. Not so special, you say, you always get your lineup in...well, except for that one time you were sick with the flu back in 2004, or your computer didn't work.
Sit down and listen while I tell you a story of real dedication and yes heroism. Not just to his team, oh sure like I said he never missed a lineup, but to his community as well.
It was the fall of 2005 and both Katrina and Rita had hit the Houston and New Orleans regions.
Actually it will probably be more accurate if I let you see what Everett wrote me a few days later. There is also an official account in the congressional record as he was one of those recognized for their sacrifice during a time of need.
"This is my first day back in my office," Everett wrote. "The power just came on here in this part of Beaumont (TX). Don't know if it will last. I will start working half days starting Monday.
"Minimal damage here at the office, mostly water. My restaurant took a big hit to the roof. I'll be out of business for a month or so. My barn was completely wiped out. No power in Nederland or any of mid-county and will not be for a month or so. Port Arthur will be longer. I heard today that Port Neches Schools will start back on November 1st. Nederland will probably follow suit.
"You wouldn't believe how it looks down here. Like a war zone. They say it is going to be a long time before everybody has power. Lots of roofs gone. One house is destroyed, and the house next to it isn't touched. Amazing!
"The kitchen part of the restaurant is fine and it is being put to use. We have big army tents set up in the parking lot and we are feeding the emergency workers, police, fire, sheriff deputies, highway patrol, National Guard, Coast Guard, Red Cross, etc. We have fed about 4,000 meals per day for the last four days. Donations from area businesses that were losing their food anyway. It has been extremely heart warming to see all of these folks come together like this.
"No one, and I mean no one, had provided for these men and women. These "first responders" had no food supplied for them, no place to cook it."
(Let me add a personal note - Please read that last paragraph a second time! Now think about George Bush's famous line, "Brownie...you're doing a heck of a job.")
"So, I volunteered the restaurant to cook and feed them. Couldn't do it without all of the help we get. You wouldn't believe how thankful these guys are. They go out of their way to tell us how much they appreciate us.
"I have been sleeping in a trailer parked in the parking lot at the Restaurant with some police officers, it has AC from a generator."
As Hurricane Ike bears down on the Texas coast his family has been evacuated again. Everett has stayed behind, but you have to know that his lineup was in on time.