MIAMI (WSVN) – The Miami Marlins spread some holiday cheer to more than 100 families in need during a drive-thru giveaway.
7News cameras captured Marlins outfielders Lewis Brinson and Monte Harrison, as well as at least one other participant dressed as Santa Claus, handing out gift bags as cars lined up Thursday for the event hosted by the Marlins Foundation.
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic there hasn’t been an offseason off the field for the baseball team.
“It’s a tough time for everybody. A lot of people are hurting right now,” said Brinson. “To bring some gifts, some cheer, some things that they can hold on to and hug tight for a long time during this rough time, it means a lot for me to come out here and to give some stuff away.”
Brinson, who grew up in South Florida, and Harrison spent more than an hour handing out bags filled with gifts for 120 families.
The families from Liberty City were pre-selected based on need. Brinson and Harrison played the role of Santa by giving the children some of their game-worn equipment.
“A couple of bats, a couple of cleats, some batting gloves, lizard skins, you know, stuff little kids like,” said Harrison, “so we’re going to see who takes what.”
“In the season of what I call uncertainty, it’s great to see you have organizations like the Marlins that still care for the kids,” said recipient Jerry Sawyer.
Several Marlins players have worked hand in hand with the Marlins Foundation since the pandemic started.
“Our players are so committed. They’re always reaching out to us at the foundation to figure out, ‘How can I be more involved?’ What else can I do?’” said Rocky Egusquiza, executive director of the Marlins Foundation. “To have Lewis here, who’s from this community, giving back to this community is extremely inspirational.”
“I love seeing, not only kids, but just their parents, all the hard work that they’re putting in, to maybe take a load off their back, give them something for Christmas, so maybe they can use this as a Christmas gift,” said Brinson. “A lot of people are struggling right now, and I just want to be out here and help.”
The Marlins continue to show they’re embracing the community during this difficult time. They will be handing more than 100 holiday fruit gift bags across from Marlins Park next Wednesday, beginning at 1 p.m.
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