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Kansas City Chiefs fans have raised thousands of dollars for a cancer fund named after Josh Allen's grandmother in the days after their team eliminated the Buffalo Bills from the NFL playoffs.
Brett Fitzgerald, who runs a fan account named "Chiefs Kingdom Memes," asked fellow Chiefs supporters to donate $13 to the Patricia Allen Fund, which benefits the Oishei Children's Hospital in Buffalo, in honor of the drive that tied the score at 36-all with just 13 seconds left in the AFC divisional round playoff game.
As of Wednesday morning, more than 9,8000 people had joined together to raise $178,000 in just over 24 hours, according to the Oishei Children's Hospital's Twitter account.
"Thank you all!" the hospital wrote alongside a photo of a child's drawing that says, "Thank you Kansas City Chiefs" next to a football. "These donations help the ongoing need and ensure our team has the tools, training and programs to care for the kids in WNY ❤️."
An incredible $178,000 from over 9800 donors has been donated in just over 24 hours from #ChiefsKingdom Thank you all! These donations help the ongoing need and ensure our team has the tools, training and programs to care for the kids in WNY ❤️ pic.twitter.com/wWXvDXxjXF
— Oishei Children's Hospital (@OCHBuffalo) January 26, 2022
Josh, 25, lost his grandmother Patricia in 2019. In Dec. 2020, the Patricia Allen Fund was launched, and Bills fans initially donated a total of $1.1 million in $17 increments (honoring Josh's number). The fund benefits the hospital's critical care team and provides ongoing support for equipment, training, education, and programs. This past year, the hospital's Patricia Allen Pediatric Recovery Wing was opened.
Despite a staunch effort from Josh and the Bills, the Chiefs claimed victory in Sunday's game at Arrowhead Stadium thanks to some last-minute heroics from star quarterback Patrick Mahomes during both regulation and overtime.
Fitzgerald told KSHB 41 that the impromptu fundraiser was originally set to benefit Mahomes' 15 and the Mahomies Foundation. But a conversation between one of his friends and a Bills fan led him to change his mind.
On social media, Fitzgerald said the friend noted that Buffalo fans likely would have donated to Mahomes' charity had they advanced to the AFC Championship Game. The idea was enough to change Fitzgerald's course of action.
"I said I love that idea and immediately changed the donation recommendation to Josh Allen's charity and donated to it myself," he wrote, adding that changing the donation suggestion to Josh's foundation "seemed more appropriate."
Stacy Revere/Getty Images Josh Allen
In his interview with KSHB 41, Fitzgerald said the goal of the fundraiser is "to celebrate" the Chiefs win over the Bills "while giving due respect to Josh Allen [the] Bills and Bills Mafia."
"It's pretty amazing. I mean, I'm real proud of Chiefs Kingdom for this and I'm loving the response from Bills Mafia," he told the outlet, adding "What a rivalry!"