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Family in shock after JJ Watt helps pay for grandpa's funeral

A Houston Texans fan tweeted she was selling some of her JJ Watt gear to raise money to bury her grandpa. Watt told her to keep the items and he'll help with costs.

HOUSTON — JJ Watt may not be a Texan anymore, but he continues to Stands for Houston.

A local family had been unable to bury their grandfather for nearly a month, so they turned to Twitter hoping to sell some of their prized possessions. 

"Last month has been very dreadful," said Tara Roderick. 

Roderick lost her father Jerry one month ago, a day after Father's Day. 

"As a daughter you can't bury your own father, it's painful," Roderick said. 

For four weeks now, the family has been struggling to come up with the money to lay him to rest, so her niece Jennifer Simpson turned to Twitter. 

"It got to the point I was selling valuable items on social media," said Simpson. "Items that mean something to me."

She tried to sell her JJ Watt women's edition Reebok shoes and her Watt women's Texans jersey. She tweeted out: Anyone interested? 

"He's got so many followers, I didn't think he'd even see it," said Simpson. 

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Twenty minutes later, #99 replied with a retweet: "Don't sell your shoes and jersey. We'll help with the funeral. I'm sorry for your loss."

"I was shaking. Like is this for real?" said Simpson. "This dude doesn't even know me."

She called to let her aunt Tara know right away. 

"I called her a liar," said Roderick. "I told her ain't nobody famous gonna respond to you, we're nobodies."

It didn't take long for Jennifer's phone to buzz again. Watt sent her money via PayPal to help pay for the funeral. 

"For him to step up and help us, it lifted a burden off of us," said Simpson. 

"I almost had a heart attack," said Roderick. 

RELATED: JJ Watt Foundation donates $500K to Boys and Girls Club of Greater Houston to update technology centers

But the story doesn't end there. JJ Watt's act of kindness prompted so much more. There was even a response from "The Talk" host Loni Love

"This is a headline because he's famous, but hundreds of people have helped us," said Simpson. 

The family is now close to having everything they need to say one last goodbye. A final farewell made possible thanks to so many strangers who wanted to help too. 

"These people don't know us or our story," said Simpson. "They don't know what we've been going through. It reminds me there is good in the world."

Marcelino Benito on social media: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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