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Travis Kelce uses his “zest for life” and “passion for people” to do good in Kansas City

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Travis Kelce made a difference not only on the field last Sunday, but also out in the community this weekend as well.

It was quite the little weekend for Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce.

It all started last Thursday night at Kelce’s third-annual Walk the Walk fashion show event, which benefited his foundation, 87 & Running, as well as Children’s Mercy Hospital and Operation Breakthrough.

The Guild provided a lively yet intimate setting that set the stage for the uniquely-styled looks from various local Kansas City boutiques on the runway. However, the night’s real showstoppers proved to be the children from Operation Breakthrough, a charity that serves children in need in Kansas City and works closely with Kelce’s foundation, whose dance moves yielded a standing ovation from the crowd.

Appearances by fellow Chiefs teammates, including quarterback Patrick Mahomes, as well as highly-coveted auction items, such as memorabilia signed by other Chiefs players and Kelce himself, made for a successful night of infectious fun and giving back.

When it came time to address the crowd, the real reason behind why everyone was there became even more evident, as Kelce delivered an emotional speech in which he credited his mother’s influence as being the biggest catalyst behind his drive to help others.

“The Chiefs Kingdom is everything to me, but anywhere I can lend a helping hand to anybody, that’s what I’m all for,” Kelce said. “I’ve been genuine in that because of my mother. I got emotional up there, but it’s because I’m a very passionate person and it’s what I believe in.”

That passion Kelce is referring to is something that has been present in him from a young age. At least that’s what his mother, Donna, said while watching her son interact with attendees.

She said, with immense pride, that Kelce has had a “zest for life” and “passion for people” ever since she can remember.

A larger-than-life passion like that can only mean big things and those big things may already be on the horizon. In fact, Kelce said he’s already thinking about broadening the reach of his foundation.

“It’s unbelievable,” Kelce said about the growth of Walk the Walk over just three years. “Hopefully, next year it gets even bigger. I’m working on branching out to Cleveland Heights, Ohio, which is where I’m from.”

Kelce’s good deeds did not end Thursday night when the curtain closed, though.

The following morning, as if perfectly on cue, he was recognized as the NFL’s Week 2 Community MVP on Friday — just hours after the close of Walk the Walk.

The honor was a result of Kelce’s work in opening the 87 & Running Robotics Lab, which provides a safe space and educational opportunities for the underserved kids in the Kansas City area.

According to the NFLPA, “The innovative and groundbreaking lab opened its doors on Sept. 18 as part of a large-scale expansion at Operation Breakthrough, a local non-profit that serves more than 300 students by paving a pathway for them to succeed. Kelce personally donated $45,000 to the project – half from his own pocket and half from his 87 & Running Foundation.”

While Kelce considers it an act as simple as, “just doing what his mother taught him to do,” Chiefs head coach Andy Reid commented on his tight end’s honor by relaying a story that shed light on just how big Kelce’s heart really is.

“We were at training camp and went out to [dinner],” Reid said. “The tight ends were there and this little kid saw Travis, came up and gave him a hug and wouldn’t let go. Travis embraced it. He made that little guy feel like he was the greatest kid on Earth. That’s how he rolls – he has a good heart.”

And what better way to cap off the weekend than with a third straight Chiefs victory to start the season?

On Sunday, after a weekend of good off of the field, Kelce demonstrated just how good he is on the field.

Kelce helped lift the Chiefs to a 38-27 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in a performance that featured a dazzling one-handed catch, which preceded the Chiefs fifth and final touchdown of the day just before the second half.