MINNEAPOLIS - Minnesota athletes continue to do what they can do help fight the Coronavirus pandemic, and Vikings defensive end Danielle Hunter is the latest.
Hunter spoke with Twin Cities reporters via Zoom on Wednesday, and said he’s donating his Madden check from the NFL Players Association to North Memorial Health Hospital in Robbinsdale. He joins Vikings running back Dalvin Cook, who started doing the same thing on April 1.
Athletes are doing their part, with sports shut down, to help those most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Hunter has a personal connection to Coronavirus, his grandmother is a nurse at John Anders Memorial Hospital in New York, one of the areas hardest hit by the pandemic. His uncle is also a police officer out east.
“I get an update with how crazy it is over in New York with how this stuff is going on. I feel like it’s better to be prepared in a time of uncertainty like this than to not be prepared. It’s kind of going crazy over there with everything on short supplies and all that,” Hunter said.
The money locally goes to hospitals working to create masks that help prevent the spread of Covid-19. Hunter said he thinks about his family out east every day.
“We call her every day and check up on her, making sure she does the right things and if she’s alright. It’s just crazy knowing that they’re in something like that what’s going on. Only thing you can do is just watch, hope for the best and pray,” Hunter said.
On Thursday, Minnesota sports broadcasters from the Wild, Twins, United, Vikings, Timberwolves and Lynx announced the Feed the Cities – Voices of Minnesota campaign. Fans are encouraged to request messages from broadcasters through Camoe, and for at least a $30 donation, the select broadcaster will record a message.
The proceeds will go to the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Twin Cities, the Greater Twin Cities United Way and Second Harvest Heartland. You can also text a donation to 243725 with the code “ONEMN.”
Vikings’ receiver Adam Thielen recently did his part, hosting an all-day radio fundraiser with KFAN through the Thielen Foundation. The effort raised about $285,000, which will go to various charities in the Twin Cities that help those affected by Coronavirus.
Timberwolves coach Ryan Saunders and his wife recently joined the charitable efforts. They’re donating nutritious snack packs to local Boys and Girls Clubs, when kids might otherwise be struggling to get food that would otherwise be provided in school.
One of the athletes hardest hit by Covid-19 is Wolves star Karl-Anthony Towns. His mother died of complications from the virus on Monday at just 58 years old. Before he knew of her diagnosis, Towns pledged $100,000 to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, going into research to find a vaccine to fight the virus.
Earlier this month, Minnesota’s sports teams announced that workers at various local stadiums would still be paid despite sports being shut down due to Covid-19. The Twins, Timberwolves, United and Wild all made donations to their leagues as part of the initiative.