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Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Our respects to Ms. Emma Culpepper

I want to pause from the sometimes nauseating debates that happen on blogs, particularly sports-related blogs like this one, to offer a note with which I'm sure no one here will disagree.

I wish to pay my respects to Ms. Emma Culpepper, the lady who reared Daunte Culpepper from the time he was one day old. Culpepper, 92, passed over the weekend at her home in Ocala.

I did not know Ms. Culpepper and barely know the Dolphins quarterback other than the few times we've talked in a professional setting since he came to Miami last season. But I know Ms. Culpepper reared as many as 15 children during her life, most of them not hers.

I know she took in Daunte Culpepper when she was already in her sixties.

I know she did a pretty good job with at least one of her kids, because despite any of Culpepper's faults as a player, he is nonetheless a gentleman.

That makes Ms. Culpepper more valuable than a quarterback. That feat, for which there is no reward other than one in heaven, is more noble than winning any MVP award. Too often, covering professional sports, one can lose sight of what is important and what is truly valuable and what is undeniably noteworthy.

This passing reminds us that touching lives is more important than touchdowns. Raising kids to be good citizens is of greater value than raising trophies in triumph.

This passing reminds me how blessed I am that my mother is still with me at age 81. It makes me appreciate that we'lll be able to celebrate Mother's Day together this weekend. It reminds me not to take the time I have left with her for granted.

I love you, Mami.

I don't know if Culpepper reads this blog or not. But if you, like me, admire what Ms. Culpepper and all mothers do for us -- how they improve our world while they are in it -- go ahead and leave your thoughts or condolences.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dante, if you read this, I am a fellow Alumni from UCF. My condolences go out to you! Ms. Culpepper obviously did a great job with you, and I am sure with others she raised. She will be rewarded for her lifes work! I wish I had been at UCF when you played! PaulB UCF'93

4:27 PM  
Blogger steve said...

God bless.

4:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

my respects go out to mrs. culpepper. armando, i know you get heat for being religous, but i think its great. the world is becoming increasingly secular and its good to know that some people are still spiritual. hey , i was curious, if you dont want to say, thats fine, but are you catholic or protestant? again, i understand if you dont want to tell. anyway, god bless!

4:40 PM  
Anonymous Joseph said...


I already respected your work (although I did not always agree) and now I respect you even more as a person. Sometimes, especially in the sports world, everyone needs to be reminded there are more important things than the NFL. Thanks for that reminder.

Dante, if you do read this blog, my the peace of the Lord be with you and everyone Ms. Culpepper touched throughout her life.

6:12 PM  
Blogger Christian said...

My heart goes out to you Dante. God Bless!

7:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Armando, This article is so amazing, especially in light of Mother's Day upcoming on Sunday. Here was a woman who at age 62 adopted a one-day old baby and also raised 14 other children, not her own. She is a Saint and Daunte has always reflected a great upbringing. He is a polite young man. I watched him for years when I lived in Minnesota and he always treated the fans, his coaches and teammates and the media with respect and professionalism. I hope he can come back from his injury and have another 2004 stellar season. He deserves this and my condolences go out to him and his family.

8:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

god be with her

8:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

DC, I 'm sorry you lost your mother. What great pain and sorrow accompanies such a loss.May God use this situation in your life to bring closure on an enduring proocess, and the motivation to get back to being a great quarterback! God Bless, and good luck no matter where you start next season.

9:07 PM  
Blogger Noah said...

Sorry for your loss Daunte. She must have been a very special lady.

11:12 PM  
Anonymous Jessie said...

I’m so sorry to here about your mother. She is in a better place now a woman that takes care of so many kids that needed homes is definitely in a better place now. Please keep your head up DC. You have always been my favorite QB in the nfl since your second season in Minnesota. You have no clue how excited I was when you were coming down here. Sorry that this league is about what you have done for me lately. At the end things well always work out for the best if not here some where else just doesn’t lose faith. Keep your head up. God bless!

11:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Praise be to Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ the King!!

12:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

May her body and soul rest in peace. Good Luck Daunte in your comeback quest.

12:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My condolences Daunte. She sounds like one amazing lady, and it shows in how you conduct yourself as such a good guy. I'm sure she is one pround momma!
Best of luck with everything.

12:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


My sincerest condolences...I'm sending you all my best thoughts to get you through this time.

2:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Daunte, no matter what decision the Dolphins make on your future, know that a lot of us hope that you can come back and play like you can. I for one hope that is with the Dolphins.

My condolences for your loss. Anyone who takes in children and raises them to be be respectable men and women deserves a special place in heaven.

8:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"for all his faults as a player" Classy Armando....classy. Maybe you could have saved that shot for another time?

8:38 AM  
Anonymous Tampa Tony H said...

This is a very nice Human article.
That, humanity, gets lost too often in the greedy selfishness of sports fandom.
Thanks Armando, on behalf of anyone who still has time to thank their mother for their life. What they've fonr with it should always be a tribute to their mother. If people did that, it would be a better world.

9:10 AM  
Anonymous Patrick said...

Duante, don't believe your mother is gone. All the things she taught you are alive and well inside your heart.

The only heaven there will ever be is the product of what we pass on to our children. She has passed on something wonderful inside you that will live in your children.

Peace brother, carry on the good fight...

9:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

She will always be with you in your heart, Daunte.

God bless

10:14 AM  
Anonymous King Phil said...

Hey Anonymous, I guess there always has to be one A-hole in the bunch. You just got done reading a touching post, you should be pondering your relationship with your own mother, you should be greatful and thinking about things that really matter, but instead you focus on one phrase by Armando?

This guy does a great job and this post makes that obvious. So why don't you go kick your dog (if he hasn't run away yet), go do your child porn, go live the bitterness-filled life you've always lived and leave us normal people on here alone. And keep your ridiculous snide criticisms to yourself!

God bless, Daunte and us all.

11:39 AM  
Anonymous Ron Montanez said...


I know that you understand how blessed your life has been even through these unknowing times. That blessing from God was Ms. Emma Culpepper. You will both be in our prayers this weekend as we all celebrate Mother's Day. The beautiful article by Armando reminds those of us who still enjoy having our Mother's here on earth, how lucky and blessed that we truly are!!

Please remember one thing DC, we never truly lose the ones we love, they simply become our Guardian Angels, and most of us will agree that we need all the help we can get!!!

Hang in There and God Bless!!!

12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


It must be tough in a time that you may be feeling a little lost to lose this woman who was so special to you...

Keep doing what you do; you seem to be on the right track!

3:13 PM  
Anonymous John Michaels said...

Doesn't matter how feel about Culpepper as a quarterback. It sucks when you lose somebody close to you, especially your own mother. My condolences to Daunte and his family.

8:37 PM  
Blogger DwinkinAle said...

Thanks Armando for the great note. I wish Daunte and his family the best.

10:12 PM  
Anonymous Jeff said...

Dante, My warmest thoughts and prayers go out to you and all your mom's friends and family, I am sure there were many! I remember reading about her and her unbeleivable efforts to help so many people through her gift of adopting so many lucky young people. I always enjoyed when you would bring her up here into the Metrodome to watch you play. All your fans up here in Minnesota miss you a lot. In fact I was as
big of a Vikings fan as you could be up until you left. They are going to have to win me back now. Again I'm very sorry for your loss! So take care. God bless. Good luck.

Fan in Minnesota,
J L Plummer

11:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yawn.... where did she pass? your house or did you really want to say "passed away". good god where did u learn ur iingleesh?

11:59 AM  

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