New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is using social media in the hopes of connecting with a survivor of the devastating Northern California wildfire who, undoubtedly, is one of his biggest fans.
A social media user identified only as Christian claimed that he was displaced by the powerful wildfire, which broke out in early November. The blaze, later dubbed the Camp Fire, quickly raged through Paradise, California, and into the surrounding areas, eventually burning more than 153,000 acres, according to Cal Fire.
Christian said in a post on social media that when the flames approached his home on November 8, the only thing he managed to save before fleeing was Brady’s No. 12 jersey.
“The only thing I grabbed out of my house on the morning of November 8 as The Camp Fire in Paradise, CA, consumed the entire town was my Tom Brady #12 Game Jersey!” Christian wrote. “I lost everything… (GO PATRIOTS).”
The post eventually got the attention of Brady himself, who re-shared the pictures with a message (and surprise) of his own.
“So many heart-wrenching stories of loss from my home state … but you’re crazy Christian!” Brady — who grew up in San Mateo, about 200 miles from Paradise — wrote on Thursday. “Can anyone get me an address to send a ball to go with the jersey?”
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According to CBS Boston, during a press conference on Friday, Brady said he was able to get in touch with Christian, noting, “We’re gonna send him something.”
Brady reportedly added, “We lose a game and you feel like the whole world is caving in. But keeping things in perspective, you realize there’s a lot of people dealing with a lot of things that are very tough. Just to be able to provide support for us, as athletes, is pretty cool and important in what we do.”
At least 52,000 people fled Butte County when the Camp Fire broke out. Many are now living in hotels, with relatives, or in makeshift shelters, the Washington Post reported.
As of last Sunday, the Camp Fire was 100 percent contained more than two weeks after first sparking on November 8. The fire has left 88 dead and 249 people injured, Cal Fire reports. The fire decimated at least 19,000 buildings in Paradise and encompassing areas.
This week, heavy rain brought new threats of mudslides to residents affected by the blaze.
“We just can’t catch a break with it right now in the county,” Cal Fire battalion chief Patrick Purvis told CBS on Thursday. “I mean, we just go from fire season straight into floods, landslides.”