Along with the Washington Football Team's annual Breast Cancer Awareness game against the Ravens on Sunday, Stephanie Rivera wanted to work together with the team to create a surprise for her husband, Ron.
The result was as heartwarming as ever.
#washingtonfootball surprised Ron Rivers with a coaches corner of cutouts featuring family (including the dogs) friends, players and coaches including Andy Reid, Steve Smith and others - they’re donating $49 per cutout in honor of Bobby Mitchell to the American Cancer Society pic.twitter.com/kl1Bu99Ya1— Mitchell Tischler (@Mitch_Tischler) October 4, 2020
This is very cool too - Coach’s Corner has cutouts from across the league to encourage Ron Rivera in his fight against cancer. Raised more than $30k! Coaches like Andy Reid and Sean McDermott and players like Steve Smith and Greg Olsen pic.twitter.com/XNuqMCmZFn— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) October 4, 2020
Buffalo Bills (@BuffaloBills) October 4, 2020
As Ron Rivera deals with his own battle with cancer, Stephanie and Washington organized a "Coach's Corner" in the stadium filled with 400 cutouts of family, friends, and colleagues to show the support and solidarity in what would be a scary time for most.
Ron Rivera, though, has dealt with his battle with cancer in admirable fashion. Diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma located in a lymph node following a self checkup, Rivera has continued to show the strength and courage that's been a staple of his coaching career.
The cutouts will feature some recognizable faces in the stands, including the man who gave Rivera his start as a linebackers coach in Philadelphia and current Chiefs coach Andy Reid. Bills coach (and former Eagles/Panthers assistant) Sean McDermott, Bears coach Matt Nagy, former Panthers star players like Steve Smith, Luke Kuechly, and Greg Olsen - not to mention Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan as well.
It's a star-studded list of a support system for Rivera. But the cutouts won't just serve as an uplifting gesture for Rivera ahead of a challenging Week 4 matchup with the Ravens, but will also serve as a symbol for charitable donations.
The American Cancer Society, a nonprofit organization chosen by the Rivera's, will be getting $49 per cutout to continue honoring Bobby Mitchell, who wore jersey No. 49. Expected to raise around $30,000 from the cutout donations and an additional $8,000 from direct donations for the game, fans were also able to contribute to the cause by purchasing cutouts of their own.
The support for Rivera didn't stop from the stands, however. Players and coaches alike sported "Rivera Strong" T-shirts pregame as well.