The New England Patriots haven’t punched their ticket to Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta, but they’re already ensuring one of their biggest fans is going to be there.
The team surprised 64-year-old Don Cox, the President and CEO of the Cape Cod and Massachusetts Military Support Foundations, with two tickets to the big game to honor all of the work he’s done to help provide financial and emotional support to Massachusetts active duty military, veterans and their families.
Cox thought he was being invited to the Patriots Hall of Fame on Tuesday to talk about a game ball he received in 1964 when he served as a ball boy during the team’s game against the New York Jets at Fenway Park.
Then, former Patriots linebacker Andre Tippett presented him with the coveted tickets.
“I was shocked,” Don told Patriots.com. “I heard the voice and I recognized it immediately. I thought he was just over here. I didn’t realize it but when I saw the tickets, I was like ‘You’ve got to be kidding me.'”
Cox, who lives in West Barnstable, Mass., and will be bringing his wife to the big game, has been honored by the team before. He was named a Patriots Difference Maker of the Week in 2017.
“The families are what keep me going,” Cox told CapeCod.com at the time. “Seeing their needs and being able to do something about it, that’s what motivates me. Whether it’s putting a smile on a child’s face who is worried about a parent on deployment, helping a single military parent make ends meet this month or providing winter coats to veterans in need – it’s the most rewarding work I’ve ever done.”
Of course, Cox is hoping he and his wife have extra company at the Super Bowl.
“Only thing that can make it better is if they [the Patriots] win the next game, and the next game so that they be there with us,” he said.