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Franklin Square kid meets his NFL idols

Kidsday reporter Joseph DiGennaro with football greats Dwight

Kidsday reporter Joseph DiGennaro with football greats Dwight Clark and Joe Montana. Credit: Dominick DiGennaro

Two years ago, was one of the greatest days of my life! For as long as I can remember I have been a fan of Joe Montana and Dwight Clark both of whom played for the NFL’s San Francisco team, the 49ers.

My dad was given tickets to a private meet-and-greet at Steiner Sports in Westchester by his friend. I had just won a championship game with my local football team, and my dad told me we were going to take photos and celebrate that.

When we walked into Steiner Sports, I said “Dad, where are we? I don’t see any of my teammates.” He replied, “You will have to wait and see.”

We went into another room where there were about 20 people sitting around when I noticed The Sign. It said, “The Catch,” and under it was a picture of Joe Montana and Dwight Clark. I knew what the catch was. It was a famous pass Joe Montana threw to Dwight Clark against the Dallas Cowboys in the 1981 divisional championship to make it to the Super Bowl.

A few moments later Joe Montana and Dwight Clark entered the room. I was stunned. The man introducing Joe and Dwight said I could ask them questions, so I stood up and asked away.

What I wanted to ask him was, “What do the Cowboys and possums have in common? They both play dead at home and die on the road.” (The Cowboys are our archrivals.) But because this was a once-in-a-lifetime thing I asked, “Joe, what defensive player did you fear the most?” He responded by saying, “Well, there are a lot of defensive players that I have feared, but the one I feared the most was Lawrence Taylor [of the Giants] because of his extremely hard-hitting power.”

I was given the chance to take photos with them both! I could not stop smiling. Joe Montana complimented me on the way I was dressed, which was funny because I gave my mom a hard time about what I was wearing.

I told my dad, “Thank you, thank you, thank you so much,” and two years later, this is still one of the best times of my life!

Karen Landsman’s sixth-grade class, Polk Street Elementary School, Franklin Square

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