KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A metro teen got a special gift from Chiefs punter Dustin Colquitt this week.
It remains to be seen if Colquitt’s team is headed to the Super Bowl, but on Tuesday, 15-year-old Jose Parra found out he is going. And while he’s grateful for that gift, he’s also grateful for his new smile.
“[Part of my lip] was preventing me from talking good so they had to cut it off,” Parra said.
He went to an event at Arrowhead Stadium back in October for TeamSmile, a nonprofit that helps kids get vital dental work.
“With the laser we were able to re-position the muscle right there out at Arrowhead in a matter of about a minute or two,” said Bill Busch, co-founder of TeamSmile.
Busch asked him to come back in half an hour to finish the treatment.
“Some of the kids just don’t come back,” Busch said. “He came right back in one hour for the treatment, so that impressed me that he had great follow through.”
Then on Tuesday he came in for a check-up. Parra sat down, and when he opened his eyes, he got the surprise of a lifetime: Colquitt was standing in front of him with a sign for Super Bowl LIII.
“It was exciting. He came to me. I was like, ‘Huh?'” Parra said. “He was like, ‘I’m the punter for the Chiefs.'”
Colquitt gave him two tickets to the big game with flight and hotel included.
“You and your mom are going with me to the Super Bowl, and I was like, ‘Wow! Really?'” Parra said. “This is like crazy to me because this never happened to me once — like never.”
On top of that, TeamSmile is stepping up and giving Parra and his mom, Magda Recarte, $1,000 for spending money on the trip so they won’t have to spend a dime.
“I haven’t told them yet, but we’re going to make sure that’s taken care of so they won’t have any worries, and they’ll just go have fun, and hopefully the Chiefs are there!” Busch said.
Recarte said last Christmas, money was tight, so this year is quite a gift.
“I’m happy. Last year, we didn’t have anything, but this year thank you to the guys for helping me and my son,” Recarte said. “I’m going to the Super Bowl. I’m happy.”
“It’s incredible experience for him,” Busch said. “I’m excited. I’m hoping that will stick with him the rest of his life, and hopefully it will inspire other kids that if you do the right thing — in this case, if you take good care of your teeth and seek out help — that you get rewarded for that.”
“She didn’t have enough money to take me to a real game, so this is really exciting, so thank you,” Parra said. “Thank you very much.”
Colquitt was given the tickets for his nomination of the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award. TeamSmile was his charity of choice.
This will not only be Jose’s and his mom’s first time at a Super Bowl, but their first professional football game and flight on an airplane.