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Fitzgerald, Campbell Give Back

Posted Dec 4, 2013

Fitzgerald hosts annual Big Brothers/Big Sisters event; Campbell provides shopping spree

Larry Fitzgerald accepts a thank you plaque from a one of the "little brothers" at Monday's event.

Larry Fitzgerald was in the hot seat.

One by one, children involved in Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona had their chance to ask the Cardinals’ star wide receiver anything they wanted on Monday night. They stepped to the microphone on the patio at Eddie’s House in Scottsdale, and a wide variety of inquiries spouted out.

Among the gems: ‘Would you ever cut your hair?’; ‘Do you have bodyguards around you?’; ‘How do you be brave and not afraid?’; and ‘Do you prefer ASU or U of A?’

It was the fifth straight year Fitzgerald took part in the organization’s ‘Larry Fitzgerald Holiday Dinner’ event, and he said the questions never cease to amaze him.

“You never know what they’re going to say,” said Fitzgerald, who brought along his son, Devin. “You never know what they’re going to do. That’s what makes it so special. They’re going to ask you some off-the-wall questions. I didn’t get the famous questions: ‘What kind or car did you drive today?’ or ‘How much money do you have in your pocket?’ They asked some great questions and you can tell they put some thought into it.”

There were 50 children aged 6-to-16 at the event along with their adult match. After the question-and-answer session concluded, Fitzgerald signed autographs and posed for pictures with every Big Brother or Big Sister and their little, then hung around and chatted casually.

There was trivia and a raffle, and the kids toted around their goody-filled backpacks supplied by Fitzgerald.

Fitzgerald was a big brother several years ago and said he still talks to his matched ‘little brother’, D.J. A young girl asked Fitzgerald if D.J. puts him down as a reference.

“Yeah,” Fitzgerald said with a smile. “Last year I got a phone call from a job interview. I was glad he would consider me good enough to be a reference for him.”

On Tuesday, defensive end Calais Campbell spread some holiday cheer as well, bringing 55 children to the Target at Tempe Marketplace in Tempe for a $200 shopping spree.

Campbell and some Cardinals teammates, including Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd and the appropriately named Frostee Rucker, browsed the store with kids from the UMOM Day center and his Right Track After School Program. Boston Market donated a holiday meal and Santa also made a visit.

‘Christmas with Calais’ was held for the fourth time, and Campbell said after a short stint of homelessness as a child, he’s always made it a priority to help those in less fortunate circumstances.

“It’s so rewarding, especially at an event like this when they get a chance to go buy things they never could,” Campbell said. “Their smile is from ear to ear and it’s even bigger (on) me.”

“It’s kind of hard because there are so many kids out there I want to help and there’s only so many people I can take,” Campbell added. “It’s hard, but you get a feel for it, and I want to help as many kids as I can.”

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