"We have to share the true spirit of humanity and love."
East Carolina's head football coach and former Broncos wide receiver Scottie Montgomery said that last week, and they are words Montgomery lived ahead of Mother's Day.
On May 11, "Coach Mo," as he is called at ECU, visited walk-on Kiante Anderson's mother at the elementary school where she works.
That's where Montgomery told Tia Chapman her son would receive a scholarship as he continues his career the Pirates. "We watched him on the field, off the field, in the classroom, and everything he did showed great character," Montgomery said later. "Kiante worked hard, was never late, and did it all the right way."
Understandably, the video of the moment garnered widespread exposure.
And in Denver, perhaps people paid more attention than in most other cities.
In 2000, Montgomery joined the Broncos as a wide receiver from Duke and was on the team in a reserve role for three seasons.
What impressed everyone was his maturity and desire to learn more about the game. In fact, Karl Dorrell, a former wide receivers coach, commented as to how much the young free agent knew about defenses.
"My interest in coaching began when I was a sophomore at Duke," Montgomery said, "that is where I started studying defenses, particularly fronts and stunts. Coach Dorrell had nice things to say about my knowledge, but I must credit my high school coach, Ron Greene, for giving me my early basic football values."
During his childhood, Montgomery didn't have much. His parents worked in textile mills and didn't own a car. They borrowed money to send Montgomery to Duke, and he said he knew then he would end up as a preacher or coach.
Both roles, Montgomery said, would allow him to give "positive values to future generations."
"We are always bringing it forward, mentally and emotionally," Montgomery said. "I grew up with absolutely nothing, and I really did not know how little I had of material things until I got to Duke."
"But I knew my parents raised me with that true spirit of humanity and love."
There is no question that those values shine through now, and the Broncos can be very proud of the work being done on and off the field by Scottie Montgomery.
He showed that ahead of Mother's Day as he gave Anderson and Chapman a gift they won't soon forget.
Years after his time growing up in North Carolina and playing in Denver, Montgomery showed just how much values still matter.