BUFFALO, N.Y. — Following the Buffalo Bills' playoff loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, Chiefs fans began donating to a foundation that is close to Bills quarterback Josh Allen.
Wednesday morning, Oishei Children's Hospital says more than 9,500 Chiefs fans donated more than $173,000 to the Patricia Allen Fund.
A Facebook group called "Chiefs Kingdom Memes"posted Monday evening,calling on Chiefs fans to donate $13 in honor of Josh Allen's performance Sunday. They're calling for $13 donations to commemorate the drive that sent the game to overtime in the final 13 seconds of the game.
"Bills Mafia was the catalyst in this, and we're just following their lead on it," Chiefs Kingdom Memes Facebook page owner Brett Fitzgerald said.
Kansas native and Chiefs fan, Brett Fitzgerald, created the Facebook page over the summer of 2021. Since then, the page has collected more than 8,000 likes.
"It started as celebrating the Chiefs' victory by donating the $13 to commemorate the 13 seconds, but it was to Patrick Mahomes' 15 and the Mahomies Foundation," Fitzgerald said over Zoom. "About an hour or two later, I was messaging with a buddy of mine, Alex Irvin, and he said, you know, I was messaging with a friend of mine up in Buffalo. He said if the Bills had one Bills, Mafia probably would have been donating to charity. I'm like, I like that idea so. Instantly went found Josh Allen's foundation. I donated $13 to it, so basically, switch $13 over to Josh Allen's foundation. I made a quick name about it, posted it there, posted a screenshot of my donation, and deleted the other one from Facebook and Twitter recommending Mahomes' foundation. I said this is better," Fitzgerald said.
Less than 24 hours later, the hospital was flooded with donations from supporters.
Wow we are overwhelmed with the outpouring of donations from #ChiefsKingdom @ChiefsMMZ! Nearly 4,000 donors have provided over $60,000 today to support the kids and families we care for. Thank you for making a difference here in WNY ❤️ #BillsMafia @JoshAllenQB @BuffaloBills— Oishei Children's Hospital (@OCHBuffalo) January 25, 2022
Children's Hospital of Buffalo Foundation vice president Andrew Bennett said, "Any kids that are growing up, whether they're playing sports or not-- sportsmanship and courtesy and integrity are lifelong lessons, and this is a great example of sportsmanship."
This hits close to home for Fitzgerald because his 7-year-old son lives with autism and has asthma. According to Fitzgerald, he has been treated by their local children's hospital a few times.
"I have a son with autism," Fitzgerald said. "So, he does go to the Children's Hospital. I live in San Antonio. He does go to the Children's Hospital in San Antonio."
The Patricia Allen Fund was created in November 2020, when members of the Bills Mafia began donating $17 each to Oishei Children's Hospital following the passing of Josh Allen's grandmother.
Ultimately, more than $1 million was raised.
The hospital dedicated the Patricia Allen Pediatric Recovery Wing in Allen's grandmother's honor.
If you would like to donate to the Patricia Allen Fund, click here.
Tim Meehan and Pheben Kassahun at WKBW first reported this story.