When the FDNY football team was in Chicago last month, they came home with a victory and an awesome team mascot: Pudgie the chicken.
The team found Pudgie the chicken wandering on the street near a slaughterhouse. It seems this red-feathered fiery chicken reminded the team of someone they knew and loved, and recently lost.
Retired Fire Department New York (FDNY) Lieutenant & FDNY Football founder Pudgie Walsh died September 21, 2016. He was a 39-year career firefighter and started the semi-pro FDNY football team in 1972.
The first game between the NYPD'S Finest and the FDNY's Bravest was in 1973, and now the first responder teams are part of a national league and play around the country to raise money for charities.
Today was the last practice before our game against #dc this #weekend. One of our #captain needed a little pep talk to get him mentally ready for this #game. You know I was in his ear motivating the men! #newyork #fdny #fireman #firemen #chicken #instagrammer #instapet #petstagram #firechicken #followme #followthechicken #raisemoney #forcharity #support #football
When they found the chicken in Chicago, FDNY's Bravest team was still mourning the loss of Lieutenant Pudgie.
"Someone just yelled 'It's Pudgie,' and it just lasted. We just went with it. No question," team player and firefghter Jarrett Howe of Tribeca's Engine 8 told NY Daily News.
The firemen are nursing Pudgie the chicken back to good health. He spends his days with the team and at FDNY firehouses, and goes home at night with one of the firemen.
With Pudgie the chicken on their team, the FDNY Bravest team is one win away from playing in the national first responders championship game! The FDNY Bravest team plays the NYPD Finest team on June 3, and the winner of that game will go on to play in the championship.
You can follow Pudgie the chicken's adventures on Instagram and cheer for him and the FDNY team!
Go Pudgie, go!
Do you have any experience with rescue chickens like Pudgie? Let us know in the comments below!
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