The Rushmore Report: Why Are 90,000 Fans Waving at a Children’s Hospital?


What would you think if you saw the entire crowd at a packed football stadium waving to the children’s hospital behind them? Sports have long been seen as something that ordinary people look up to for inspiration and encouragement. Whatever they are going through, they look to their favorite teams to feel better and make it through their tough times. This is that story – amazing, moving, and so real.

Many teams have stepped up to create traditions that honor their fans. The Iowa Hawkeyes have created a new tradition of honoring the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital. The facility overlooks their stadium. It was a pleasant surprise for both fans worldwide and the young patients and their guardians in the hospital when the entire Hawkeye crowd waved to the hospital.

The University of Iowa Children’s Hospital was founded in the early 20th century. The hospital is located perfectly in a way that it overlooks the field where the team plays.

Right after the first quarter of the home team’s win over Wyoming, the local crowd in the stadium turned toward the hospital and waved. This was a sign to let the children and their families know that the fans cared for them. The kids and their families were watching the game from the windows of the hospital and were surprised at what they were seeing. This was something they witnessed for the first time. The Iowa Hawkeyes went on to beat Wyoming, 24-3.

The idea for the tradition didn’t just originate spontaneously. An Iowa football fan page on Facebook came up with the idea and reached out to more fans over a period of a few months. Eventually, it had reached enough Iowa Hawkeye fans to become a reality. In response, the hospital thanked the team and fans through a tweet.

And now the tradition continues. In a time when other football programs have divided a nation with their actions on the sidelines, it is good to find one program that reminds us of the best there is in sports – and America.


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