BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) – Local woman Patty Champion is on a mission to crown Buffalo Bills player Harrison Phillips Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year.
Champion loves Harrison Phillips so much that his daughter bought him a Phillips jersey for Mother’s Day. Her daughter’s colleague is her neighbor and asked her to sign it.
“It just impressed me that he took the time to sign the shirt for someone he didn’t know and even wanted to personalize,” said Champion.
Shortly after, it was announced that Phillips was one of the nominees for the Man of the Year award.
He is involved in the Organization of playmakers, which helps at-risk youth build character through sports and education.
“I thought to myself, if he can take the time to sign my jersey, I can take the time to help him win this award,” said Champion.
As of December 9, she started tweeting 500 times a day, voting for Phillips to win. That’s over 19,000 times in total, so far.
“It’s important to me, it’s important to these children and young adults. You see the pictures of him online and he just isn’t donating any money, he’s there for them, he encourages them, you see him hug them.
His hard work does not go unnoticed.
“That Patty, man, she’s a warrior.” I don’t know if you’ve seen her there, but after this season I’m going to try to meet her and give her my appreciation in person, ”said Philips.
He said that while he didn’t want it to be because of him, it would be great to earn some money to give back to the foundation.
The winner receives a donation of $ 25,000 to the charity of their choice. The second and third nominees receive $ 10,000 and $ 5,000 respectively.
Phillips is currently in third place.
“I don’t want the attention for that, I want the attention to the people I’ve worked with and their amazing stories and lives, but it was really heartwarming to see the support given, you saw the fans of. Bills gather behind things before.
Champion said she couldn’t do it without the support of Bills Mafia and that she would tweet until the last possible second.
“It would mean a lot to just see him wearing that patch on his chest, that would be great and these kids deserve it, he deserves it. It would make me very, very happy if he won.
This coming weekend is the last weekend to tweet the votes.
Kayla Green is a journalist who has been part of the News 4 team since 2021. See more of her work here.