WORCESTER (CBS) – Country music living legend Garth Brooks strode into a news conference on Friday full of energy and ready to talk about his three weekend concerts in Worcester. The recording artist slowed only when talking about New England Patriots lineman Nate Solder, who will co-host a flag football camp for underprivileged kids Saturday.
“Nate shows the rest of the world what can you do, what is possible,” said Brooks. “Learning that he is going through his own battles himself and still making time for all these kids, for all these other people’s kids- that’s a hell of a man.”
Solder’s infant son, Hudson, was diagnosed with kidney cancer last October. Solder himself received treatment for testicular cancer before the 2014 season.
“If that were to happen to me, I’d retire from the world, wrap myself around my kid and feel sorry for myself,” Brooks told WBZ-TV. “So knowing this is going to make it a really special camp tomorrow [Saturday].”
Brooks’ foundation, Teammates for Kids, is working with ProCamps to provide 100 boys and girls an opportunity to learn flag football techniques from the Super Bowl winning Solder.
Founded in 1999, Teammates for Kids has hosted camps across the country featuring nearly 4,000 professional athletes. Brooks says the mission of the charity is to promote children’s health, education and inner-city outreach. Among their various projects, the foundation builds “Child Life Zones” in hospitals, giving kids a playroom while they receive treatment.
Brooks and his wife, fellow country music superstar Trisha Yearwood, have held athletic camps at every stop along their current world tour.
“There’s a Bible verse [that says] to whom much is given, much is expected,” Yearwood told WBZ-TV. “No matter what you do in life, no matter what you do for a living, you always have an opportunity to give back. As you get older, you realize those are the most rewarding things in your life.”
For more information on Teammates for Kids, visit their website www.teammatesforkids.com.