This year Vince Wilfork will spend his Thanksgiving in New Jersey, where his Patriots will take on the Jets in a primetime contest during which much of a tryptophan-filled nation will probably at some point doze off. But even if he may not have a chance to enjoy a turkey dinner with his family that day, the big defensive lineman will make sure that others can.
For the third straight year, the Vince Wilfork Foundation will join Florida-based Cheney Brothers to lead a Thanksgiving Turkey Drive that provides turkeys to churches and community centers for people in need. In total, the Drive is expected to give away 700 turkeys in Gainesville, Fla., which is where Bianca Wilfork, Vince's wife, spent some of her formative years.
Wilfork's charitable endeavors don't end there, either, as the holiday season approaches. In homage to his late father, who passed away from complications related to the disease while Wilfork was in college, his Foundation earlier this month kicked off its "Tackling Diabetes" campaign, and through the end of November the life-science research company EMD Millipore will match any donations made to the cause. (That can be done in $10 increments by texting VINCE to 50555, or by visiting vincewilfork75.com; everyone who donates will be entered to win tickets and tailgate passes to a December Pats game.)
And as Christmas approaches, Wilfork has become a spokesman for Eastern Bank as its 94 branches become drop-off locations for the Marine Corps' Toys for Tots program. In fact, donors are encouraged to Tweet a picture to Wilfork himself -- @wilfork75 -- when they bring a new, unwrapped toy to the bank and help Wilfork in seeing that these will, indeed, be happy holidays.
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