October 28, 2017
A Delaware family received an outpouring of support this week after their late son's touching connection with his favorite Eagle hit the national airwaves.
More than $100,000 in donations and order proceeds for bracelets inscribed with Lukas Kusters' nickname, "The Dutch Destroyer," flooded a website set up in memory of the 10-year-old within two days of an "SC Featured" segment aired on ESPN with an accompanying online feature story last Sunday.
Both featured Lukas' meeting with Wentz and linebacker Jordan Hicks in May, as well as the lasting impact it had on the Eagles quarterback and the boy's family.
Lukas, an aspiring NFL player from Wilmington described by his family as a die-hard fan of all things football, Eagles and Wentz, gave Wentz a bracelet when he met his idol in May, less than two weeks before his death. The quarterback has worn it in every Eagles game since.
The $5 bracelets and other donations made in Kusters' memory had racked up about $140,000 by Friday, a family member said on Twitter.
The family said it will give the proceeds to nonprofit organizations supporting other families facing a similar battle with childhood cancer.
Another update! https://t.co/aInCRpvJwN has sold over 23,000 bracelets and received over $140,000! Orders are expected to go out very soon💚🦅— Katelyn Elizabeth (@KatieKusters) October 27, 2017
"This is incredible," Wentz tweeted of the support. "This is incredible. Praise God for that support. Lukas truly has impacted so many!"
This is incredible. Praise God for that support. Lukas truly has impacted so many! https://t.co/CEL9mcZ31x— Carson Wentz (@cj_wentz) October 27, 2017
As he battled the cancer, Lukas had received a personal "get well" video from the Eagles quarterback after a hospital employee told the Eagles about his case.
Although Lukas appeared to have beaten the illness, the cancer was soon found to have returned, after which the boy asked to meet Wentz and thank him for the video.
The 10-minute "SC Featured" segment included emotional interviews with Kusters' family, his youth football coach and Wentz, who ultimately teared up when the conversation turned to the shirt Lukas was buried in – Wentz' No. 11 jersey.
In the Eagles' defeat of the Washington Redskins on Monday night, Wentz handed the ball from one of his four touchdown passes to Kusters' family during the game, as well as meeting with them both before and after the win.
Carson Wentz meets with the family of Lukas Kusters, the Dutch Destroyer, pregame. pic.twitter.com/EPDSPKoUzf— Tim McManus (@Tim_McManus) October 23, 2017