Sports stars from around the world took a moment on National Nurses Day earlier this month to pay tribute to healthcare heroes on the frontlines battling the COVID-19 pandemic. It was a coordinated effort, as the stars took to social media to dedicate a jersey to a healthcare hero in their lives or in their community. The #TheRealHeroes project included some really special tributes.
NBA star Donovan Mithcell thanked a healthcare hero from his care team from when he was battling the coronavirus.
Dr. Tribble, you’re a superstar! On behalf of myself and the @NBA, thank you for being on the frontlines fighting to keep us safe. I’m honored to dedicate my jersey to you.
Join me in making a jersey to show some love to your healthcare heroes using #TheRealHeroes. pic.twitter.com/RCJtx2uCug
— Donovan Mitchell (@spidadmitchell) May 6, 2020
Pro wrestling superstar John Cena (sure, this extends to sports entertainment as well, before the “wrestling isn’t real” crowd chimes in) represented the WWE with his dedication. “Today I’m using my voice to showcase a real hero for reminding us what it means to be great,” he said.
Dr. Shannon, you are the real deal! Having men like you on the frontlines gives us all hope. On behalf of @WWE, thank you for your hard work and selflessness. Show your appreciation to the healthcare heroes in your community by making your own “jersey” for these #TheRealHeroes. pic.twitter.com/WpQauKb86I
— John Cena (@JohnCena) May 6, 2020
The Great One himself, Wayne Gretzky, also took part in the project and dedicated a jersey to a healthcare hero, a former player, and Olympic Gold Medalist.
I’m proud to dedicate my jersey to Hayley Wickenheiser for all her incredible work in the fight against COVID-19. Thank you on behalf of myself, my family, and the entire @NHL community. Show your thanks to a healthcare hero by making a jersey in their honor & tag #TheRealHeroes pic.twitter.com/YiIwjwXMo1
— Wayne Gretzky (@WayneGretzky) May 6, 2020
While professional athletes are used to everyone wearing their jerseys and seeing their names on the backs of adoring fans, it was poignant seeing them flip the script and make a meaningful dedication to the people putting it all on the line to keep everyone safe right now. Having perspective is good, and spreading appreciation and positivity is even better.
A few other standout tributes:
I’m proud to dedicate my jersey to @DeeyaDaswani. Day in and day out, she’s been on the frontlines fighting to keep us safe. On behalf of the @nfl, @saints , and all our fans, thank you for your hard work and selflessness. #TheRealHeroes pic.twitter.com/T7xymeLeHu
— Shy Tuttle (@KingTut_90) May 6, 2020
Hayley, I am proud to wear your name on my back! The @NHLBlackhawks are incredibly grateful for you and all your fellow nurses in this fight. I know you battled COVID yourself and are now donating your antibodies to help find a treatment. You’re truly a hero! #TheRealHeroes pic.twitter.com/UYuwtwvM5x
— Jonathan Toews (@JonathanToews) May 6, 2020
I proudly dedicate my firesuit to EMT Heather Pleasant. Everyone at @NASCAR and I thank u for all your hard work n dedication to keeping our community safe. You are one of #TheRealHeroes. #RowdyNation, join me n showing some love to a healthcare hero you know. pic.twitter.com/aS824MtG8b
— Kyle Busch (@KyleBusch) May 6, 2020
Thank you to #TheRealHeroes.
— MLB (@MLB) May 6, 2020
We join @TheJudge44 & others in honoring healthcare heroes who inspire us. RN Stephanie Pantelidis is a dedicated 1st year ER nurse in NYC. After 6 straight night shifts, she inquired about working at drive-thru testing sites on her day off. Thank you, Stephanie. #TheRealHeroes pic.twitter.com/g3c5cOYZ2s
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) May 6, 2020
— NFL (@NFL) May 8, 2020
Make a jersey like Alex thanking your heroes and post a pic using #TheRealHeroes.
— Orlando Pride (@ORLPride) May 4, 2020
Here at The Dad, we hope you, your families, and communities stay safe and healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic. For the latest information, please utilize online resources from local public health departments, the Centers for Disease Control, and the World Health Organization to remain as informed as possible.