Florida State WR Travis Rudolph forges friendship with autistic boy during school visit

Sporting News

With so much negativity surrounding football, at all levels, it's always great to see players doing good off the field. A random act of kindness by Florida State wide receiver Travis Rudolph changed the day, and maybe the lives, of an autistic boy and his mother on Tuesday.

Rudolph, who was visiting a local middle school with some of his teammates, noticed the boy eating lunch alone at a table. Pizza in hand, Rudolph joined him and they feasted together.

“I asked could I sit with him and he said, ‘Sure, why not?’” Rudolph said, per Seminoles.com. “He told me his name was Bo, how much he loves Florida State. And we went from there.” 

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Rudolph, who had no idea why Bo was alone, also didn't know the boy is autistic.

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The boy's mother, Leah Paske, later wrote a lengthy Facebook post commending Rudolph for his gesture. She mentioned receiving a text from a friend with the above photo, and immediately began crying.

"This is one day I didn't have to worry if my sweet boy ate lunch alone, because he sat across from someone who is a hero in many eyes," she wrote. "Travis Rudolph thank you so much, you made this momma exceedingly happy, and have made us fans for life!"

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Rudolph reportedly was moved to tears himself after learning of the Facebook post. 

The newfound friendship seems to be for life. Rudolph told reporters he would have no problem scarfing down some carbs with Bo Paske in the future.

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