Charles Tillman may be sidelined with a torn ACL, but it’s not stopping the Carolina Panthers cornerback from generating a lot of buzz this week for his namesake foundation, which provides financial assistance to families with a child in the hospital.
More immediately is the Jan. 17 playoff tickets giveaway. From now until Thursday at 10 a.m., the Charles Tillman Cornerstone Foundation is hosting a raffle for two tickets in 100-level seats, an autographed football, a parking pass and allowances for travel and food.
Then Tillman will personally call to notify the winner. Raffle ticket prices vary: $10 for five tickets, $15 for 10 tickets and $50 for 75 tickets. Those interested can enter to win online.
The giveaway comes after Tillman and his wife, Jackie, hosted the foundation’s first benefit in Charlotte on Monday night, a nearly sold-out affair packed with Panthers and deep-pocketed Charlotteans.
The organization is expanding the Tiana Fund – named after Tillman’s daughter who received a heart transplant as a baby – to the Levine Children’s Hospital. It will help families with everyday costs like grocery money, rent and bills.
Peanut, as he’s called, personally acted as auctioneer Monday for excursions like a vacation in Honduras and weekend in Chicago, where Tillman spent 12 seasons with the Bears. It was hard to tell Tillman, dancing around a packed Ritz ballroom, was hurting. “I feel great!” he said at one point in the night.
I counted at least 20 of his teammates in attendance. A handful of them, including cornerbacks Josh Norman and Lou Young, helped up the ante in the auction as well as the overall party’s energy later on the dance floor.
Tillman didn’t seem fazed by the prospect of the reconstructive surgery he’ll undergo Wednesday. His focus now is in building his organization locally and then rehabilitation on his right knee. And on cheering on his teammates this weekend.
On Sunday, the Panthers play the Seattle Seahawks at Bank of America Stadium at 1:05 p.m.