OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — With less than 24 hours before the Chiefs face the Titans in the AFC Championship game, there are still seats available; tickets range from $200- $2,000.
But there’s one that’s already taken. Paul Cherry will be sitting in the Lamar Hunt Legacy Seat on Sunday, with his daughter by his side.
Paul Cherry became a season ticket holder for the chiefs 53 years ago, when he was 11 years old. He became the youngest ever Red Coater at Arrowhead at 18. He’s the longest running one too – he’s worn the coat for 44 years.
When he learned he was going to be sitting in a seat named for a Kansas City legend, he said he was speechless. You see, for as long as he can remember, Paul Cherry has been a Chiefs fan. He has the photos, and the devotion to prove it.
“I only missed five games in 53 years,” he said.
With the average season consisting of 10 games, that’s 1 percent of all the games.
He got his first season ticket at the age of 11. He first donned the Red Coat at the age of 18. He is proud of all the pins that adorn his red suit jacket. In addition to his full time job with Children’s Mercy, he’s volunteered thousands of hours to the Chiefs’ program’s many charities, many of which were established by Chiefs players.
During the first quarter of Sunday’s game, everyone will know it. Cherry’s photos, name, accomplishments, and smiling face will be on the big screen in Arrowhead, in front of 75,000 fans.
“To be nominated under a program like that and see me up on the scoreboard after all these years,” he said incredulously. “I am just blessed that I have the opportunity to sit in a seat like this, that not many people get to do.”
Cherry will be the first Red Coater – one of the Chiefs devoted volunteers – to sit in the fabled Lamar Hunt Legacy Seat.
It is a golden yellow seat that made its debut in the 2019-2020 season. There are two, so Cherry’s daughter, Caroline, will be there beside him.
“It means so much to him, and it means so much to me. When he told me, you know he was in tears. And I started to cry too because how much he loves the Chiefs and how much his honor means to him,” she said. “Being able to sit in a seat, you know, named after Lamar Hunt, one of his idols,” she nodded, and smiled to indicate how much it meant to the family.
And of all the games, Sunday’s is a big, important, and perfect one to watch from that golden seat.
“It’s a championship game on top of it, it’s the ultimate,” Paul said.
Because that is truly a Cherry on top of the world.