Derek Jeter Surprises Grieving Mother of Sandy Hook Victim Victoria Soto

Gabe Zaldivar@gabezalPop Culture Lead WriterDecember 20, 2012

Derek Jeter‚ New York Yankees shortstop, captain and one hell of a guy, delivered but a modicum of respite for a mother who lost her daughter in Sandy Hook—a teacher who happened to be a huge Yankees fan. 

We are all still dealing with a tragedy that makes no sense and never really will. The New York Daily News reports that Jeter stepped up to give a grieving mother some comfort as she mourns the loss of her daughter, 27-year-old Victoria Soto. 

Soto lost her life protecting children from the gunfire of Adam Lanza during the Sandy Hook shooting—a heroic stance by a wonderful teacher. Her family was left to mourn a sudden loss and make sense of the madness.

Amid all the wonderful things that were said about the teacher at her funeral, one interesting tidbit leaked.

She was a tremendous Yankees fan.

One of the best to wear the pinstripes may have heard that and decided to give a grieving family a phone call.

While it was but a small gesture, it seems to have worked wonders in giving a mourning family some smiles on an otherwise sorrowful day. Soto's mother, Donna, seems to have been overjoyed by the chat with the Yankees' captain. 

This is what Soto's cousin, James Wiltsie, had to say:

Vicki loved the Yankees — that was part of her eulogy. No one in the family reached out, so (Jeter) must have heard about it and ... reached out.

It was a surprise and unexpected. Donna was ecstatic over it and very happy. She spoke to him for quite some time.

According to the report, Soto's sister chimed in on Twitter with thanks to Jeter for the kind gesture:

Derek Jeter just called my mom!!!!! Thanks Vicki, she needs it thank you @yankees this meant a lot to my mother and all of us.

Really, sports and entertainment are at the bottom of the barrel of what truly matters in life. But in the days following the tragedy, we have found how powerful they can be in giving back at least a modicum of comfort to those reeling from the tragedy.

Titans running back Chris Johnson took the time before his recent game to write the names of every last Sandy Hook victim on his shoes (via Yahoo! Sports).

Victor Cruz had a fan in Sandy Hook.

The Giants wide receiver and his famed salsa dances were touted as legendary by Jack Pinto—a six-year-old boy who loved his Giants and Cruz.

After the shooting, Cruz visited the family and delivered to them cleats and gloves he wore in a previous game. The flashy star was taken aback to learn that little Jack's family buried him in a Cruz replica jersey.

Every last one of us was shocked by the awful actions that took the lives of innocent kids and their teachers. We all wanted to do something to help, and star athletes are no different. Again, sports are at the very bottom of a heap of things that matter, but they can certainly help to lend a small dose of comfort when needed.

A big thank you to Jeter and every last athlete who stepped up, even in small ways, to get these families through something so awful.


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