A letter that a hearing-impaired girl wrote to legally deaf Seattle Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman is making a lot of noise on the Internet.
Riley Kovalcik and her 7-year-old identical twin sister Erin are both hearing impaired. After seeing a Duracell commercial about Coleman’s unlikely route to the NFL, Riley decided to write him a letter. Her father, Jake Kovalcik, tweeted it out.
“I know how you feel,” Riley wrote to Coleman. “I also have hearing aids. Just try your best. I have faif in you.”
Coleman, 23, talked about what it was like for him growing up during the Duracell commercial. “They told me it couldn’t be done. That I was a lost cause. I was picked on. And picked last,” Coleman said. “They gave up on me. Told me I should just quit.”
After the letter went viral, Riley made an appearance on Good Morning America.
“I like that he actually can understand about being bullied and he actually knows more, you know, stuff like if you have problems, he’s a guy you can come to,” Riley said.
Jake spoke about his decision to tweet his daughter’s letter while he was on the show.
“There’s not a whole lot of really high-profile people or even athletes out there that are deaf that kids like Riley and Erin can look up to…that show that if you work hard, adversity really doesn’t matter,” Kovalcik said. “Just that she was able to put that stuff into words and talk to how she felt about it, it was amazing.”
The Seahawks will face the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII on Sunday, Feb. 2.