The Bengals may be facing some adversity on the field thanks to losing three of their last four games, but that’s nothing in the grand scheme of life.
Hurricane Matthew has been leaving death and destruction in many areas across the world, including Haiti. Bengals running back Giovani Bernard is the son of Haitian immigrant parents, and he has family and friends in the country who are just trying to survive.
The devastation there is something that he knows all too well and is trying to deal with while playing football hundreds of miles away.
“I have some family over there. My uncle is an IT worker and a lot of his computers and stuff are all gone,” Bernard said following Sunday’s loss in Dallas. It’s almost like I’m trying to help my family out before I start going around.
“I’ve been in constant contact with them, sent them some money to try to help somehow. It’s just something that’s really tough for those people over there. For anybody that’s been over there, it’s tough.”
Bernard has been back to Haiti many times to help with various efforts, including an earthquake relief effort back in 2014. Even when these disasters are able to be projected ahead of time, people in Haiti and other poverty-stricken countries just can’t get up and leave, as people in the United States were more able to do in preparation for Hurricane Matthew and other similar natural disasters.
They’re often left to face these disasters head on, no matter how devastating they may be.
“There’s no preparation for something like that, especially in Haiti, when they went through the earthquake and whatnot, is tough,” Bernard said. “The infrastructure of how they build their homes is much different than what’s legal, I guess, here in the U.S. It’s just something that he’ll just have to start all over again.
“Hopefully, I can help in some way.”
Redskins Pierre Garcon and Ricky Jean Francois traveled to Haiti this week to help out with delivering medical supplies in the wake of the hurricane.
It’s a sobering reminder of how precious life is, and how little the massively popular game of football can be.