BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) – Many Bills fans are turning their attention to this weekend’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals, but some fans are already looking forward to the Super Bowl.
Romello Early is only 12 years old. When he saw a friend being made fun of, he stood up to help him. Now the Buffalo Bills and Dion’s Dreamers are paying back with the surprise of a lifetime.
In October, Early gave a brand new pair of shoes to a classmate who was teased for wearing an old pair to school. Seeing his classmate being teased made Early feel bad and took immediate action.
“To see someone put down so badly and get put down just because of their shoes hurt me inside,” Early said.
After school he called his mother and asked if she could go shopping for his boyfriend’s shoes with him. He said she could use his allowance and return his Christmas presents to pay for the shoes.
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A photo of the shoe exchange went viral. The Buffalo Bills also heard Early’s story. Early and his mother, Anita James, were invited to the Wild Card Playoff game at Highmark Stadium. Little did Early know there were more surprises in store.
“My mother and I usually leave in the third quarter, so we don’t have a lot of traffic. It was a little bit suspicious that we lasted the whole game,” Early said. “I was like in such a shock.”
After the game, Bill’s offensive tackle gave Dion Dawkins Early and his mother tickets to the Super Bowl in Phoenix. James said the team coordinated the surprise with her in advance and that it was difficult to keep it a secret from her son. She knew he would be so excited to go.
“I was amazed. I was devastated. I kind of screamed and she said are you alright? And I said absolutely. I’m just grateful. It was a blessing,” James said.
“It’s so surprising that I can leave because it’s like the biggest game of the whole season,” Early added.
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Romello is hoping to see his favorite team in Phoenix on Super Bowl Sunday. He also looks forward to plans to help even more people in the years to come. He encourages everyone to be kind to others.
“Don’t be a follower. Always be a leader and treat people the way you would like to be treated because I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t like it and think about how they feel inside,” concluded Early.
Romello and his mom are planning even more ways to give back to the community. They want to work with local schools to help children who need extra support.
As for the Super Bowl, they’re hoping to cheer on their hometown team.
Tara Lynch is a Buffalo native who joined the News 4 team in 2022 as a reporter. She previously worked at WETM in Elmira, NY, a News 4 sister station. You can follow Tara on Facebook and Twitter and find more of her work here.