They got a check in the mail and weren’t sure what to do with it.
That was the situation in the offices of the Dallas Fallen Officer Foundation when the public relations officer opened the envelope and saw, staring back at him, a check for $35,300.
What was even more strange about this massive donation was the name written on the check: Isaiah Crowell, the running back from the Cleveland Browns.
The foundation was hesitant, and for good reason. Back in July, Crowell posted a graphic cartoon image on his Instagram page that featured a police officer getting his throat slashed by what appears to be an ISIS fighter.
The post was quickly deleted, and Crowell said he only posted the image in a moment of anger at recent police shootings of unarmed black men, but the damage to his public image was already done.
But as Cleveland.com reports, this recent donation by Crowell of his first NFL paycheck was his way of atoning.
“I said I was going to do it and I wanted to follow through,” Crowell told Cleveland.com.
Since his initial posting of the graphic image, Crowell has immersed himself in the culture of the policing world, attending the funeral of one of the slain Dallas officers and educating himself on police service.
Sergeant Demetrick Pennie, president of the foundation, said he now sees Crowell as a “little brother” and a man who has “found daylight out of the darkness.”
“Now, he’s the right kind of story for his community,” Pennie told Cleveland.com.
Now that Crowell has become one of the most successful runners in the league, Pennie said he is glad Crowell will be able to focus on his career and on being a role model, instead of on highly publicized social media posts.
The check is just one more sign of a man growing for the better.
Head over to Cleveland.com for the full story.