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Football tickets from Panthers star brightens spirits of family after Florence

Derrick Buchanan, far right, and his family got the chance to meet Julius Peppers and go to a Carolina Panthers game. (Carolina Panthers photo)

A family struggling to rebuild after Hurricane Florence received the gift of a lifetime recently.

Crystal Won and her two children got the chance to be guests of Carolina Panthers football player Julius Peppers. The opportunity came after one of the teachers of Crystal's son, Derrick Buchanan, wrote a letter to Peppers asking for help.

The request came because Won and her children suffered major damage to their home from Hurricane Florence. They had to evacuate. When they returned, the family was devastated to see a gaping hole in the front wall of their home.

Pictures don't really show how bad it really was," Won said. "Especially driving in and you see we have a hole in the side of the house. It's really there."

Derrick had to stay with a friend in order to continue attending school. That prompted Derrick's math teacher to take action. Peppers got the request and invited the family to attend a game.

“I was excited and at the same time kind of holding back my tears because I wanted to cry," Buchanan said. "It was kinda surreal because you see all these people on TV like get the opportunity and you think 'oh that’ll never happen to me' and it did.”

While at the game, Peppers gave Derrick Super Bowl tickets. It's an unbelievable gift and a distraction from the loss the family faced. The reality is they need more help.

Won's aunt created a GoFundMe page to help the family raise money to aid in repairs. To help, click here.


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