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For years Upper Deck’s Heroic Inspirations program has shined a light on brave youngsters involved in sports by creating a special card of them and helping to raise some funds for causes they may be involved with. It’s commonplace for fans to want to collect cards of million dollar players who do amazing things on the field, but Upper Deck would like to invite fans to collect inspiration from athletes who deserve the spotlight just as much as their professional counterparts.
Such is the case with Trevor Kling who Upper Deck first heard about from his card shop owner, Mike Fruitman.
“Trevor Kling has impressed me since he friended my son Samuel in the start of elementary school,” said Mike Fruitman, owner of Mike’s Stadium Sportscards in Aurora, Colorado. “Although they developed different interests, they remained very close and it was awesome to see Trevor excel at sports like baseball and bowling. Trevor and his whole family handled his first battle against cancer with all the dignity and strength as possible, thanks to an awesome group of friends and a family bond that every family wishes they had.”
“When his father Dave called to say his cancer was in remission, it was the best phone call I had ever been part of, only to later find out that it had returned,” Fruitman continued. “Since his first challenge, I’ve tried to involve Trevor with all of our in-store signings. With his ‘security’ help, they have all gone off without a hitch. Throughout his battle and in spite of challenges that no person should endure, I have never once heard him complain or be anything less than inspirational. I hope my son is able to live his life with the same giving qualities and strength as Trevor does every day.”
“It’s incredible that Upper Deck chose to make a card of Trevor,” said Fruitman. “I’m convinced that without cancer, they eventually would have done so when he turned pro in some sport.”
Trevor is an accomplished baseball player and a pretty incredible bowler as well. Since people are less familiar with bowling cards however, Upper Deck opted to create a baseball card for Trevor to pay tribute to the adversity he has worked through. Trevor is an incredible role model for kids, especially those going through difficult times. While fighting Anaplastic Astrocytoma, Trevor managed to continue playing sports while maintaining a 3.87 grade point average at school.
“Fourteen-year-old kids shouldn’t have to go through this,” said Chris Carlin, senior marketing manager for Upper Deck. “We were all deeply moved when we heard Trevor’s story and wanted to do whatever we could to help out the cause. We will be producing Trevor’s Heroic Inspirations cards which will be available in early October exclusively at Mike’s Stadium Sportscards.”
Collectors interested in scoring Trevor’s cards simply need to reach out to Mike’s Stadium Sportscards who will be distributing the cards for free with a donation to help Trevor’s family with the medical expenses that have been racking up.
On seeing the image of his Upper Deck baseball card Trevor slowly drank it in. His father Dave Kling said, “Trevor is a boy of few words, but his smile while looking at the card to me said a million words.”
Upper Deck would like to wish all the best to Trevor and his family while thanking Mike Fruitman for bringing his story to us. Thanks in advance to all the collectors who support this great cause!