Dre Kirkpatrick has seemed to stabilize his career on the field. A starter on the Bengals defense, he’s now one of the veterans in the secondary and has taken upon a leadership role in the position room. That leadership stems from his willingness to consistently help those in need in his community in Cincinnati, and where he came from.
This week, Kirkpatrick treated 19 underprivileged elementary school kids to a $250 back-to-school shopping spree in his hometown of Gadsden, Alabama. Each child was able to pick out a brand new pair of shoes and an outfit, along with lunch.
“When you’re walking around as a kid, the first thing the kid will want to do is look at each other’s shoes.” Kirkpatrick explained to WVTM 13 of Alabama. “That’s the first thing that a kid (will) do. That’s just something that intrigues me.”
This was a part of Kirkpatrick’s “21 Kids Foundation” non-profit organization, based in Gadsden. Kirkpatrick’s road to the NFL was not an easy one for him personally, and occasions like these speak to his message to all the kids he helps.
“I try to give these kids the message that you can achieve anything that you put your mind too.”
Kirkpatrick is just one of the several Bengals players with youth foundations and programs, and it’s always enjoyable to see veteran players maximize their platform to young people that look up to them.