Thousands celebrated the New England Patriots’ Super Bowl victory in mid-February, but a handful of players wanted to put the focus on Mindy Butts, a single mother of six whose contributions to the community outshine the Vince Lombardi Trophy.
According to Patriots.com, Devin McCourty, Duron Harmon, Kyle Van Noy and Derek Rivers surprised Butts by dipping into their social justice fund to take her car into the mechanic in order to be fixed.
Butts lost her husband to gun violence, and in an effort to provide for her family, perfected the art of “extreme couponing” to get the most bang for her buck while shopping for food, clothes and other household necessities.
She then took that skill and began teaching others how to apply her techniques so they, too, could benefit. She also helps others by donating items she buys on sale.
“Throughout the year, whether it be bread or something, I get coupons and I’ll be at home fixing sandwiches,” she said. “We’ll go out and feed the community. Thanksgiving time, I’m out in the cold. Doesn’t matter whether it’s cold or not. The mission at hand for me is to meet the needs of other people.”
Because of her ongoing work in the community, she developed a friendship with Detective Larry Ellison, the president of the Massachusetts Association of Minority Law Enforcement Officers. When her car broke down, and she was unable to get her children to school on time, Ellison lent her his car.
Word got out about her car troubles, and that’s when the Patriots stepped up. McCourty, Harmon, Van Noy and Rivers took care of the repair, showered her with other gifts and spent time with her family.
“I lost it. I was so floored. It was such an amazing experience. And then I had the chance to learn a lot about the Patriots and what they do off field too,” Butts said. “You only get to really know about the players or see them on the field, but just to know that off season, they’re dedicated to giving back support in other organizations and then go above and beyond when they feel the need to be in support of somebody that touches their heart.”
To put it simply, it was another day worthy of confetti.