TAUNTON, Mass. -- As a reporter covering the New England Patriots, the greatest exposure to players comes on the field and in the locker room.
That’s what made Friday a bit different with second-year safety Duron Harmon, who surprised third-grade students at the Elizabeth Pole Elementary School in Taunton (about 20 miles from Gillette Stadium) as part of the team’s Celebrate Volunteerism campaign.
The 23-year-old Harmon made an immediate connection, which wasn’t a surprise considering his mother Dawn is a middle school teacher in Delaware and Harmon has a 2-year-old son, Christopher.
“It’s a great thing. The feeling I had, the warmth I had, I know that I’m blessed to get that feeling because anybody can’t come in here and get that type of welcome,” Harmon said of the visit.
Harmon remembered being in awe of high school players who came to visit him when he was a youngster.
“If I had the chance to meet an NFL player, I might of went crazy when I was younger,” he said. “So I’m just trying to help them realize that reading is very important.”
Harmon said that he reads every day to his son, who is active and thus has added a different type of wrinkle to Harmon's offseason program.
“He keeps me active in this offseason. I go work out and then I pick him up from day care and we’re playing football, basketball, baseball, kicking around a soccer ball," Harmon said. "With the weather being what it is right now, we’re outside every day. It’s just fun, any time you can have someone that looks up to you and really, really genuinely loves you, it’s a feeling that’s indescribable.”