Bears Who Care: Players Welcome Students Back to School - NBC Chicago

Bears Who Care: Players Welcome Students Back to School



    The Bears defensive end is all about giving back. (Published Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2010)

    Despite their on-the-field issues, Lovie Smith's Bears are successful in giving back to the community.

    Imagine you're in third grade, and it's your first day of school. Wearing your new backpack filled with school supplies, you show up to your school expecting to see your teacher, but instead you see defensive linemen Tommie Harris and Israel Idonije.

    They are so excited for your first day of school, and they give you a high five as you head into your classroom.

    Dream scenario, right?

    That's exactly what happened for students at 10 different Chicago Public Schools yesterday.

    No fewer than 11 Bears participated in Back to School Day, welcoming back students from around the city and encouraging them in their studies. Nick Roach, Devin Aromashodu, Lance Louis and others also joined in cheering on the kids who cheer for them on the football field.

    "I was just so fortunate growing up in a family of service," Idonije said on NBCChicago's morning show Tuesday before helping welcome kids back to school. "I just really enjoy giving back to people. We do the foundation and other things to support kids in the City."

    Jay Cutler's foundation fights diabetes, while Idonije visits his native Nigeria every spring with doctors to set up a temporary clinic. Charles Tillman has raised money to promote organ donor awareness. Harris has an event to prevent child abuse this Friday.