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College football team helps fulfill a family's wish

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Updated: 12/11/2013 10:09 pm
LAKE MOHAWK, Miss. (WTVA)-- Smiles are often few and far between when someone receives a cancer diagnosis. 

But, one north Mississippi family enlisted the help of a college football team to help restore joy and hope. 

Mr. Edwin Grose says he's been a huge Ohio State Football fan for years.

“I don’t know any other fan to be,” said Mr. Grose.

An Ohio Native and former football player himself, Mr. Grose recalls meeting and even teaching with former Ohio State Football Players.

"I’ve known some of the players, some of the good ones, and I just enjoy their college very much,” said Mr. Grose.

Family members say he never misses a game. But, besides being one of the Buckeyes biggest fans, daughter Kelly Burleson says her dad is also a fighter.

“He’s not a quitter,” Burleson said.

About six weeks ago, Burleson says she and her family learned her father had stage 4 inoperable lung cancer.

“You expect it, but you don’t expect it, and at the same time you just kind of go numb,” Burleson said.

Burleson says after getting over the initial shock of the news, it became her mission to bring her dad a surprise he would not soon forget.

“I try to be a positive person and my goal from here on out is to make him smile,” she added.

Knowing her dad was a huge Ohio State Fan, Burleson lobbied a group of family and friends to help her contact Ohio State's Football Department in hopes of getting a visit, phone call or letter. After two weeks of efforts, Burleson says her sister finally got a reply.

“I sat in my truck at work and cried. I really did. I was very excited,” said Burleson.

Her father said he had no idea about the letter.

"It really surprised me... It’s a great feeling, not good -it’s great!” he explained.

Burleson says all the hard work was worth it to see one expression on her dad's face.

“I got the smile that I was trying to get on his face. So, that’s all that mattered,” Burleson stated.

Mr. Grose says he'll keep the letter forever.
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