Football player eats lunch with lonely boy, goes viral

Toby Graves
September 16, 2016

As he entered the lunch room, he noticed student Bo Paske sitting by himself at a table, so he made a decision to sit down across from him so he wouldn't be alone, ESPN reported.

But on Tuesday 30 August 2016, American footballer Travis Rudolph - who was visiting the school with his team - made a decision to join Bo while he ate.

Single mother Leah Paske from Florida shared a touching picture of her autistic son sharing a lunch table at his school with a football player. And a photo of them eating lunch together is going viral.

"I didn't even recognize that it would be this big", he said on "Fox and Friends". Did I sit with anyone at lunch? 'And I remember what the impact was when I saw guys that played in college football and the NFL coming back to us.

"I do remember middle school being scary, and hard".

"I was extremely proud of him".

"Sometimes I'm grateful for his autism", she wrote. That may sound like a bad thing to say, but in some ways I think, I hope, it shields him. And will people "stare at him when he flaps his hands"?

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'He doesn't seem to notice that he doesn't get invited to birthday parties anymore. "And he doesn't seem to mind if he eats lunch alone". It's one of my daily questions for him. "'Was there a time today you felt sad?"

"I just wanted to go say hi to the kid, because I saw him eating alone".

While Bo gets ignored by many people, and is sometimes treated as an outcast due to his impairments, this special day will probably be engraved in his memory for a long time to come.

"I feel like he is a great person, and I would love to hang out with him anytime", said Rudolph to FSU Athletics.

"He is a super sweet child who always has a smile and a hug for everyone he meets", Paski wrote. A photo was sent to Leah, who published a post on Facebook detailing Rudolph's act of kindness and what it meant to her.

Rudolph said Bo was a "really warm person", and Bo didn't initially recognize him as an FSU football player.

"I'm not sure what exactly made this incredibly kind man share a lunch table with my son, but I'm happy to say that it will not soon be forgotten", Paste wrote. She explained her son has autism and when she asks him every day who he ate lunch with, the answer is often "nobody".

Other reports by MyHealthBowl

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