Sometimes sports provides opportunities and moments that go well above and beyond the sport itself. One of these moments happened recently after the Portland Timbers v Vancouver Whitecaps game.
And then, something unique happened. As the players made their way around the pitch, Timbers center back Pa Modou Kah noticed Eva and the Bolls family near the east sideboards. Emily watched the following moment unfold in awe.
“Kah just sort of kept walking and I realized he just locked eyes with Eva. I mean it was so spontaneous,” she said. “It was so moving the way he just kind of looks at her in this way. He came right up to her and really just threw his arms around her and asked her, ‘Do you want to come on the field?’ and just lifted her over the gate.
“My son is just going crazy and Ryan and I, we just both started crying.”
For Kah, a gregarious defender whose easy-going personality has made him popular with teammates and fans alike, it was a moment that he didn’t expect or plan but one that he embraced as he instantly decided to make a difference in another person’s life.
“On my way to the sideline, I saw her,” he said. “It struck me that she had cancer and it was just a pure spontaneous thing from my side to just pick her up.”
With all the challenges of the summer and treatment, Eva has been, understandably, pretty anxious about separating herself from her family. But in Kah’s arms, she happily went to the North End of the field and helped lift one of the logs. Eva’s brother Emmet was allowed through to the field along with their parents where they spoke with Porter, Kah and some of the players.
“I almost got choked up just even talking to the mom real quick on the field and talking to her daughter,” said Porter later of meeting Eva. “She’s obviously fighting a battle right now.”
Following the log ceremony, Eva and Emmet—sans parents—received a special invitation to join the team in the locker room. Again in Kah’s arms, Eva happily went into the tunnel with the guys while Emily and Ryan waited outside.
Take a few minutes and head over to the Portland Timbers website to check out the full story. And props to Pa Madou Kah and the Timbers for doing something so kind and thoughtful.