January 7, 2016

Positivity: Colin Kaepernick sends family to punt, pass and kick finals

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Turlock, California:

JANUARY 1, 2016 9:51 AM

Turlock girl participating in NFL competition with help from Kaepernick

The 49ers haven’t been shut out of the postseason entirely.

Mya Sanchez, an 11-year-old from Turlock, is the team’s lone representative in the finals of the NFL’s annual punt, pass and kick competition this weekend in Indianapolis.

She got there with a little help from her former neighbor, 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. The NFL will fly each entrant plus one adult to the finals. Kaepernick bought plane tickets so Sanchez’s entire family – Mya’s parents and two younger brothers – could go.

“We never asked,” Mya’s father, Phil Sanchez, said in a phone interview. “He just always likes to support the local kids.”

The Kaepernicks have known Mya from the moment she was born.

Phil Sanchez said he remembered being in the Modesto hospital with his wife 11 years ago and announcing he was going to step out for a newspaper. He is a counselor at John H. Pitman High School in Turlock – which had only recently opened – and the school was about to play Turlock High in football for the first time.

As he turned to leave, one of the nurses said she’d like to look at the sports section so she could read about the upcoming game.

“And I looked at her and wondered, ‘Why does this lady really care about this game in Turlock? We’re 20 miles away.’ ” Sanchez said. “Nobody had even heard of Pitman yet. It was the second year of the school. It was 4 o’clock in the morning, and that’s the first thing she was asking about.”

The nurse was Teresa Kaepernick, whose son, Colin, was Pitman’s quarterback. She and Sanchez talked about football for the next 45 minutes.

“And my wife’s got labor pains going, ‘Hey, I’m delivering a baby over here!’ ” Sanchez said.

It turns out both families have a child with a powerful right arm. …

Go here for the rest of the story.


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