A Thanksgiving delivery
Nov. 27, 2008
Jonathan Mann, Texas Media Relations
With the season winding down and the Texas A&M Aggies coming to Austin for a Thanksgiving showdown, UT football players have their plates plenty full these days.
On Tuesday, the Longhorns made sure that others would have their plates filled as well this Thanksgiving. Seniors Brian Orakpo and Jordan Shipley, along with juniors Roddrick Muckelroy and Adam Ulatoski, were on hand to donate turkeys, pies and other elements of a Thanksgiving feast to SafePlace, a south Austin harbor for victims of domestic violence.
"It's very important because we're giving back to families that have been separated due to domestic violence," Muckelroy said before handing off the food. "It's good that we can give back and help those families out during Thanksgiving, when families are supposed to be together."
Two representatives for SafePlace dropped by Moncrief Neuhaus to receive the team's donated groceries, which will feed about 10 Austin families this Thursday. Warehouse coordinator Jacob Johnson understands the heightened importance of charity around the holiday season.
"When people think about the holidays, they think about family," Johnson said. "A lot of these families are going through a hard separation. A lot of the kids, they're going through a lot right now. So the fact that they can sit down together with the family they have or with other families who are going through similar situations and share a meal together during the holidays is great."
Despite the Longhorns' busy schedule this week leading up to the in-state rivalry game, Ulatoski stressed the importance of giving at all times, regardless of the circumstances.
"One of the hardest parts about being a college athlete is finding a balance and managing your time," the junior offensive tackle said. "But something like this is so important that you need to find time to do something like that. Domestic abuse is a terrible thing and if there's something we can do as a football player that could help, we want to take advantage of that."
"I know they have a lot on their minds, but it's great that they've come together and they've thought of other people," Johnson said of the players' donation. "These families are in transition, so they don't have anywhere to cook, and our clients off site have somewhere to cook, but they don't have the money to buy these groceries. So it's great that these players are taking time out to help us out."
This holiday season, many will be giving thanks for all sorts of things. Longhorn football players, however, are giving more than that.