Spreading Holiday Cheer

Kam Chancellor was impressed when Gavin Duckart pounded his fist, imitating the “Bam-Bam Gavel” celebration Chancellor uses after a big play. The young Seahawks fan didn’t have it quite right, however, so Chancellor offered Duckart a bit of advice. Most importantly, don’t forget to flex. 

“He told me he did it when he scored his touchdowns,” Chancellor said. “I told him to add the flex at the end so he can scare guys away. That’s cool to see guys copy what you do.”

Duckart and his parents were just three of the hundreds of fans who stood in line last week to meet Chancellor, and more importantly, to donate toys that would help make the holiday season a little more merry for local children in need. 

Fans began lining up midday for the toy drive, which benefited Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission, for a chance for a quick meet-and-greet and photo with Chancellor. All donated toys, and a few even left gifts for Chancellor, ranging from a hand-knitted stocking cap to a gavel, which came from a 5-year-old Chancellor fan named Celina. 

“It was very cool, because it’s a great cause for the kids,” Chancellor said. “It just shows the love people here have for one another out here. For me, just to see everybody out there smiling, having fun, and knowing that kids will get toys on Christmas, that’s the thrill of it to me.”

As for that gavel, Chancellor said it will either end up in his locker or on trophy shelf in his house.

Through his Kam Cares Foundation, Chancellor seeks to help children in need back home in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, as well as in the Seattle area. The fourth-annual toy drive is just one way the Kam Cares Foundation makes a difference, and like much of what Chancellor does in the community, this cause is personal. 

“I just like helping kids,” he said. “Through my Kam Cares foundation, I like to serve low-income families and single-parent homes. I know coming from a single-parent home myself that on Christmas, depending on how many kids you have, it can be tough getting presents for everyone, satisfying everyone, and kids get sad if they don’t get what they want. So I just wanted to start a drive to help kids who are in need during the holidays.” 

At one point in the evening, a white SUV pulled up outside World of Beer in the Renton Landing, which hosted the event. Lizzie Reid had been saving a little bit of each paycheck since last year’s toy drive, and result was $1,400 worth of toys that filled the trunk and back seat of her vehicle. Like Chancellor, Reid, who grew up in Tacoma’s Hilltop neighborhood, can relate to kids who didn’t have lot on Christmas, 

“I’m a big supporter of Kam’s charity work that he does both on the east coast and here,” Reid said after unloading her car with the help of volunteers. “I knew he does this every year, so last year I started saving every month, I just started putting some money away every month, then I started shopping a month ago. I wanted to make some kids happy for Christmas. I grew up like that, I was that kid.”

Like everyone else who donated, Reid impressed Chancellor with her generosity. 

“That just shows her heart and her grace,” he said. “I’m grateful for her support. Grateful for everyone’s support.” 

Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor’s Kam Cares Foundation partnered up with Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission for its fourth annual Holiday Toy Drive, serving nearly 650 children in need this season.  

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