Fun fact: do you know Colin Kaepernick’s middle name? It’s Rand. He also has a 115-pound tortoise named Sammy. That’s all I know about him.
Oh, he’s also a quarterback of some sort, and on Thursday he made a surprise appearance at his old high school, John H. Pitman in Turlock, CA, for their graduation ceremonies. And hardly anyone in attendance knew he was showing up. Pretty cool. Pitman Principal Rod Hollars arranged the visit as a tribute to two departing teachers — one, Brandon Harris, who had been Kaepernick’s football coach.
“I had to come back to say goodbye to two of my favorite teachers and also congratulate the graduates,” Kaepernick said. “I’m saying goodbye to one of my good friends and best coaches. I have a lot of great memories with him.”
The two men hugged, and then it was over — except for the cheering.
“I told you it was going to be a memorable evening, didn’t I,” Hollars boasted to the crowd afterward.
Great slice of Americana last night at Pitman HS graduation/Turlock, CA: 420 grads+fams stunned to see @kaepernick7 praise retiring coach.
— Peter King (@SI_PeterKing) May 31, 2013
Most in the crowd had no idea Kaepernick would be at the event.
“It was a total surprise,” said Kristin Pope, who graduated from Pitman last year and came to cheer on a graduating cousin. “He’s an amazing person to come and say goodbye to his coach. I think it’s great. Like, what quarterback in the NFL does that?”
Oh, and a while ago, in case you missed it, Kaepernick had an announcement:
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) May 14, 2013