Kansas City Chiefs LT Orlando Brown Jr. is being recognized as NFLPA Community MVP after making a donation to Children’s Mercy Hospital to help fund Type 1 Diabetes research.
Brown Jr. recently matched a $50,000 donation from the Emilie Rosebud Diabetes Research Foundation reaching a $100,000 funding goal for a TrialNet research project set to take place at Children’s Mercy. Earlier this month, Brown Jr. participated in a TrialNet study to raise awareness about Type 1 Diabetes screening and prevention.
“Just being able to give back to something like TrialNet for the research for Type 1 Diabetes,” Brown Jr. said. “You know the effect that it has had on the Black community, on my family, it hits really close to home. My dad passed of ketoacidosis, my brother was diagnosed at a young age. It’s a cause that hits home for me, man. To be able to give back to a hospital like this for a cause like this is really special to me.”
Brown Jr. lost his father to diabetic ketoacidosis back in 2011 at the age of 40 and his younger brother was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when he was in elementary school. Brown Jr. has supported a number of causes to raise awareness about the disease since.
Our Week 11 #CommunityMVP is fighting for a cause close to home❤️ @ZEUS__57 donated $50K to @ChildrensMercy @ResearchCM Type 1 Diabetes research after losing his father & watching his little brother live with it. The @Chiefs OL has spent time with patients on multiple occasions. pic.twitter.com/8sT1WvTy77
— NFLPA (@NFLPA) November 18, 2022
His current Chiefs teammate Noah Gray and former Ravens teammate Mark Andrews both play NFL football with Type 1 Diabetes.
“We’ve had some conversations,” Brown Jr. said. “You know Mark Andrews, one of my best friends is Type 1 as well. Me and Noah (Gray) have talked about it. It’s a disease that has gotten a lot easier to manage over the years. Him and his Dexcom machine that he has had made it a lot easier on him.”
While the ultimate goal is to eliminate Type 1 Diabetes, Brown Jr. is intent on raising awareness and ending stigma.
“It’s always scary when you’re dealing with things like this,” Brown Jr. said. “But it’s better to know than to not know. That’s why things like this are created. So many people invest time and so many different things into it. So, have a little faith and get tested and get checked out.”