One of the first things Amelia Loren Lambert saw when she entered the world at 6:05 p.m. yesterday was a Robert Griffin III jersey.
The proud father, Thom Lambert, 34, was wearing that jersey while helping his wife, Melissa, 29, deliver Amelia. The practice has become a family tradition.
“For the birth of our first girl, I wore a John Riggins jersey,” he told me. ”Her name is Pepper Jane and she’s nuts. She is absolutely a two-year-old John Riggins.”
Thom started a Facebook poll to let his friends decide whose jersey he should don for the birth of his second child. A stuffed ballet box almost forced him to buy a Kai Forbath jersey, but in the end RGIII won out.
Thom was born and raised in D.C., with a stop in Waldorf, Md., before moving to Chambersburg, Pa., for work.
“My whole family, they’re tremendous Redskins fans,” he said. “My grandma made my best friend eat Thanksgiving dinner out on the porch one year because he was a Cowboys fan.”
Thom is a bit more hospitable than his super-fan grandma. Being in Steelers country, he started offering “Redskins Starter Kits” to fans willing to convert and commit. The kits include a jersey from his own collection, a Redskins beer stein and a hooded sweatshirt. He gave out two this past season.
“It [stinks] up here being a Skins fan,” said Thom, who told me that in order to qualify for the kit, you have to show up on Sundays and root for Washington. “If I have to make a home away from home, so be it.”
For now, his home away from home includes a new addition that, despite an earnest attempt, does not bear a Redskins name.
“For the first daughter, I was like, ‘I think Gibbs is kinda cute,’” he laughed. “[My wife] loves London Fletcher. She absolutely thinks he’s the greatest thing, so London would have been the only possibility. We had a Beagle named Riggins for a while, but I pick and choose my battles.”
As for Melissa, she’s an early contender for wife of the year. In addition to allowing the first photos of her baby to include a Redskins jersey, she gave the okay for her husband to wear a Redskins tie to their wedding this past April.
“She never watched football at all until she started dating me,” Thom said. “But, the first year we were dating, she got the Redskins yearbooks for the three previous years and would study the yearbooks at night so she could talk to me about players. She’s an awesome wife.”
So, a huge congrats to this growing family and its next generation of Redskins fans.