David Bruton is no stranger to helping out in the community.
He’s volunteered at Boys and Girls Clubs, participated in Shop with a Bronco events and supported his teammates with their foundations.
But this Christmas, he wanted to do something a little different.
He adopted a family through the Denver Rescue Mission Christmas Wish list, an annual program the rescue mission facilitates for families in need.
So he took a shopping list with him and got to work. Well, it was less work and more fun.
“I love shopping for kids, so I even put on a Captain America mask, I had the shield and I was shopping with that for a little bit, just having a good old time,” Bruton said.
He bought Transformers, legos and hoodies for the boys. He had a little more trouble picking presents for the girls, so he called his brother for some advice.
He ended up going with dolls, baby strollers and an Easy Bake Oven.
“I had fun shopping for toys,” Bruton laughed. “I even bought myself a Lego set when I got theirs.”
So Bruton contacted the family, who didn’t know he had adopted them, and worked out a time to drop off the gifts.
“When I opened the trunk of my jeep, the dad was just — his jaw dropped in shock,” Bruton recalled.
“All this?” the dad asked.
“Yep,” Bruton smiled. “All this is for you and your family.”
So the four kids, ages 5, 7, 8 and 10, ran out to help carry the gifts inside.
They could hardly contain their excitement as they counted the gifts.
One, two, three … 29, 30, 31…
“Can we open one?” they begged their parents.
“No, no, we’ve got to wait until Christmas,” was the response.
“It was great. The kids had big smiles — teeth all showing,” Bruton said. “I just honestly hope their Christmas is great. I’d like to be able to check in with them just to see how the kids react.”
So while the safety isn’t sure what the kids’ final reaction to the presents will be quite yet, he’s very sure it’s a project he’d like to get involved with again next year.
“It’s the least we can do to give back — it’s no biggie to get out and give a few gifts,” Bruton said. “It’s a chance to go out there and shop. You get to control what they get, you get to make the final decision. I think it’s a great thing.”
“I wish I had my Santa Claus hat,” he smiled. “I would’ve been a skinny one, but I felt like Santa.”