Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/18/14

TUSCALOOSA, AL - NOVEMBER 13: Quarterback A. J. McCarron of the Alabama Crimson Tide sets for play against the Mississippi State Bulldogs November 13, 2010 at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
AJ McCarron is once again using his knack for getting national attention to do good- and he’s doing it by simply wearing a purple bow tie. On September 22, 17-year-old Olivia Mills was driving home from church on a country road in Fosters, Alabama when officials say she lost control of her car and crashed. Doctors induced her into a coma to give her brain time to heal, but early Saturday morning, her family announced that Olivia had passed away. Fosters is a small town, located about ten minutes down the interstate from Tuscaloosa and the home of the Crimson Tide. While Olivia’s family and her community was saying good-bye to their beloved child, student, sister and friend, AJ McCarron and the entire Alabama football team was getting ready for their game against Ole Miss. That’s when the Alabama quarterback snapped this photo of himself wearing a purple bow-tie and purple support ribbon. Purple was Olivia’s favorite color and while her family and friends had prayed for her recovery, it became the color of her cause. AJ tweeted, “I’m playing this game & wearing this purple bow tie in honor of Olivia Mills & her family. Sorry for Ur loss #angel” Even before AJ announced his support, the “Pray for Olivia” Facebook page had more than 40,000 likes. The population of Fosters is just under 3,000. Olivia was a senior in high school when she passed away, her life taken much too soon, but in just 17 years on earth, Olivia inspired thousands of people and influenced one quarterback to wear purple proudly. Some people go half a century making less of an impact on the world they leave behind.        
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