Browns fan Tom Seipel, who is battling kidney cancer, was there Sunday as Baker Mayfield, on 3rd and 2, ran for three yards with 1:10 left on the clock to seal the Browns first trip to the NFL playoffs since January 2003. Seipel, whose story caught the attention of Emily Mayfield, was watching from the Mayfield suite as the team celebrated.
Seipel, who served as a missionary in Nicaragua before his cancer diagnosis, isn’t sure how long he has to live, but Sunday he was there watching as the curse that has surrounded the Cleveland franchise was lifted. Emily, who heard about Seipel’s situation just before Christmas and had Baker make a personal video for Tom, was there to celebrate with the Columbus native after the 24-22 win over the Steelers.
It’s been a complete whirlwind for Seipel who has been receiving in-home Hospice care. He found out Friday that Browns fans had tickets for him to attend the Steelers game if he could make it north from Savannah, Georgia. According to Cleveland.com, Seipel’s father advised him to jump at the opportunity if he felt good enough to make it happen. Tom decided he had to do it. Browns fans covered the expenses and Mayfield offered up the suite.
“If I’m going to die freezing my butt off at FirstEnergy Stadium,” Seipel told Cleveland.com, “what a way to go out.”
When the starting quarterback’s wife is one of your biggest cheerleaders, you are taken care of at First Energy Stadium. Emily Mayfield made sure of it.
“You don’t understand how much she kept in touch,” Seipel told the Cleveland outlet. “She would literally send me a message every night, ‘How are you feeling today?”
Emily dialed up Baker after the game so Tom could express his joy over what just happened.
“I told you we were doing it,” Baker said.