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Football star who went viral for sitting with autistic boy signs with NFL team


AP Photo | Mark Wallheiser

Zelda Caldwell - published on 05/03/17

"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," wrote the boy's mother.

Florida State University wide receiver Travis Rudolph had a lot of people rooting for him on NFL Draft Day last week.

Last August, in an episode that went viral on social media, Rudolph made national headlines when he sat down with an autistic boy who was eating lunch by himself in his middle school cafeteria.

While visiting the Tallahassee school with other teammates, Rudulph saw 6th-grader Bo Paske sitting alone, and joined him for a slice of pizza.

Bo’s mother, Leah Paske, later learned of this act of kindness towards her son, and in a post that was shared over 15,000 times, wrote on Facebook:

“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. 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.”

After seeing Bo’s mother’s Facebook post, Rudolph told WCTV:

“[Bo’s] a cool person, I’ll hang out with him any day. And for the mom, if he needs my (cell) number, he can get it.”

While Rudolph wasn’t picked in the draft, he signed an undrafted free agent contract with the New York Giants, according to a CBS report.

On Saturday, the Paskes and Rudolph reunited to celebrate draft day. Linda Rudolph, Travis’ mother, posted a picture of Bo and her son, “Draft Day! Blessed to be with family and friends!” she wrote.

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