SEVEN HILLS, Ohio — Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett is no stranger to giving—just last night giving his team six points with his strip-sack, fumble recovery, and touchdown that also saw him set the franchise's single-sack record. But Monday, Garrett gave back in a different way, taking Northeast Ohio families on a holiday shopping spree.
Garrett met the families at the Meijer in Seven Hills Monday morning, giving them each money to spend on gifts, clothes, toys, and whatever else they might want or need.
Kamarion Shephard, 12, was one of the children Garrett took shopping Monday. He loaded his cart with some new games, toys, and his favorite item—a new iPad mini. But despite being treated to all of the many items in the store, Kamarion didn't just have himself in mind, picking out some Christmas gifts for his brother who wasn't there.
"It felt really great. I just want my brothers to be happy on Christmas," Kamarion said. "So I was able to get my brother something."
Kamarion's dad, Ambus Shephard, said Garrett's generosity was something that truly touched him and his family.
"It's a once in a lifetime thing and I'm very appreciative of it," Ambus said. "It's just amazing, this is amazing to have my kids blessed like that. That's why I talk to my kids to tell them: Be thankful and grateful for the little things and count your blessings every day, that's what I tell my kids."
Garrett said that taking the families shopping Monday was just something that's in his nature and has been since he was a child himself.
"I remember when I was growing up I wanted to take care of my family and I didn't realize how much of a family of the city I was going to be a part of, like they would be to me," Garrett said. "Having that interaction with them, that face to face reminds me of what I had with my family when I was growing up. I wanted to be like that, I wanted to just keep on growing and extending to those out there."
Garrett not only spent the morning shopping with the families at Meijer, he also had those families and kids help him pick out toys for children being cared for at University Hospitals. The toys will be delivered to the children at the hospital in time for the holidays.
"Being able to have things they want during the holiday season is truly special, To do the things you want, have the things you want around the people that you want around you is beautiful and I wanted to give them the opportunity."
Garrett is having an explosive season and while he may have on-field goals of making the playoffs, becoming the NFL sack leader, and winning Defensive Player of the Year, he had just one goal on Monday.
"Just try to be a blessing this holiday season. I think that's what we all try to be to our neighbors in our community," Garrett said. "I'm trying to give back how I can and be the person I've been taught to be and trusted to be by my family."
Camryn Justice is a digital content producer at News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Twitter @camijustice.
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