Victor Cruz: Meeting Jack Pinto family was 'toughest by far'

  • Updated: Dec. 19, 2012 at 03:21 p.m.

Victor Cruz hopes meeting with the family of a 6-year-old boy killed in the Connecticut school shootings has helped them cope with the tragedy.

The New York Giants receiver on Wednesday somberly recounted his hour-long visit with Jack Pinto's family a day earlier, and said he was most affected when asked about their decision to bury their son in his No. 80 jersey.

Cruz stopped for a moment, his eyes becoming watery: "You never go through some circumstances like this. This was definitely the toughest by far."

Pinto's family said Cruz was their son's favorite player. Pinto was one of 20 first-graders and six adults killed in the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Cruz wrote Jack Pinto's name on his cleats and gloves before the Giants' 34-0 loss to the Falcons. He presented them to the family Tuesday.

"Incredibly proud of what he's done," Giants coach Tom Coughlin said on Wednesday, according to USA Today. "That family will remember that all their days. And hopefully some of their grief might at least temporarily be spent in being able to embrace Victor Cruz. The fact that he went and did that speaks volumes about what he has inside."