The coronavirus pandemic has forced us all to rethink how we operate in the world, and that includes giving back. One New England Patriots player came up with a clever way to help bring joy patients at Boston Children's Hospital.
While 6-year-old AJ spent time fighting to get healthy at Boston Children's, he took on a new challenge: beating an NFL player at a video game.
Patriots Safety Cody Davis started ‘Cody’s Gamers,’ where he tests his skills in the virtual world against young Boston hospital patients.
"Starting out, our mission statement really was just to bring joy to kids. Put a smile on their face in a tough situation," Davis said.
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A father of three boys, Davis is a gamer when he’s not on the gridiron.
"I was just looking for different ways to give back so I started researching video game charities, and I kind of built into this idea, this would be so cool especially now with all this virtual stuff that goes on," he said.
After a year of planning, Davis is now playing.
AJ's mom, Ibironke Ogunbodede, welcomed this kind of distraction for her son.
"Once I walked into the room and I saw the whole set up, I was like 'OK, what's going on?' and she said, 'oh yeah, the person you’re playing with is from the Patriots,' and I’m like, 'what?'"
AJ played several games with Davis.
Now, not only does AJ have a missing tooth and a new favorite video game, but he has a new favorite football player, as well.
"“He always talks about it. 'Remember the day I played with Cody? I played the Splatoon game,'" Ogunbodede said of her son AJ. "That’s like his to go game now. I think it’s been very beautiful.”
AJ won most of the games by the way...
Davis hopes to grow his program and potentially host a large in-person event later this year. NBC10 Boston will be following his progress.