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Bedridden Broncos fan gets a surprise visit

Bedridden Broncos fan gets a surprise visit

PUEBLO, Colo. - One of the most loyal Denver Broncos fans does all of her cheering from her bed.

Regina Dekoevend, 61, was born with cerebral palsy and has been bedridden most of her life. It was her dad who introduced her to the Orange Crush.

"My dad got me into football because I couldn't do anything else," she said. "I couldn't go outside or nothing to walk around. I was always in my chair."

Dekoevend received a surprise visit on Thursday from retired Broncos linebacker Randy Gradishar and former defensive tackle Antwon Burton.

"We won't discuss why the Broncos didn't win last year's Superbowl," Gradishar said to Dekoevend.

"No," she replied a chuckle.

On Sept. 14, Dekoevend won't be cheering on her beloved team from her Pueblo West home. She'll be watching from Sports Authority Field as the Broncos take on the Kansas City Chiefs.

"I don't like the Kansas City Chiefs when they play the Broncos. I don't like anybody who plays the Broncos," she said.

Dekoevend's cousin, Rita Garcia, will be traveling with her to the game. "She knows all the plays. She knows what they should do, what they shouldn't do. And if they don't do what she thought they should do, she's just screaming and yelling at them. But she loves 'em. Truly loves the Broncos," she said.

Gradishar presented Dekoevend with an autographed #53 jersey for her to wear on game day.

"This game is really special because this will be the first Bronco game I've ever been to, ever," said Dekoevend, with her infectious smile.

The idea began when an employee with American Medical Response tried to get Dekoevend an autograph from a Broncos player. Gradishar became involved and the Phil Long Family of Dealerships joined in to make the experience possible.

The game in September against the Kansas City Chiefs is also Ring of Fame Day. Several Broncos legends will be at the game, including Gradishar and three recently inducted Ring of Fame members: Gene Mingo, Rick Upchurch and Dan Reeves.

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