All it took was a phone call to make Blake Cognata’s day that much brighter. Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson picked up the phone and called a New York teen who is fighting cancer after finding out about a Twitter campaign the teen’s friends put together.
The #APCallBlake campaign on Twitter was brought to Peterson’s camp and the football star called about 90 minutes after the campaign was launched on the social networking site.
Dylan George, Cognata’s friend who started the hashtag said, “He’s not really taking visitors or anything. I talked to his (Cognata’s) sister this morning, who I graduated with, and she said he was ecstatic about it and pretty much just glowing.”
He went on to add, “If you know Blake, you know he’s a Vikings fan!”
Of his reaction to hearing that Peterson made the call, “I was very happy, very surprised by it. It does show that someone that big, making that much money, that’s on every Sunday can take a couple of minutes out of his day to make a kid’s life that much better. It definitely says something about athletes, and he’s a good role model for future athletes.”
Peterson, named the Vikings’ Ed Block Courage Award winner this season, has said he hopes his recovery from major knee surgery has inspired others. But he’s also taken the time to inspire with his words and time. Twice this season, Peterson met with Make-A-Wish program participants.
Even Minnesota Vikings coach Leslie Frazier had something to say about Peterson’s latest do-good. “A call from Adrian Peterson, that person will never forget that the rest of their lives. And it has a chance to change their lives. He understands his role, unlike some guys who say, ‘Well, I’m not a role model’ or shy away from the impact they can have. He understands that. He gets it.”
According to the local paper, Cognata was in a deep sleep induced by pain medication before the call and had a 104 fever. Blake’s mother explained that despite his pain he was able to take the call. She said, “Blake answered his phone and he was so cute it was like, ‘Helllloooo?’ Then he said, ‘Can I ask who’s calling? For real? Oh, my gosh, I can’t believe you called me.’ ”