Shaq Lawson was the Bills’ first-round pick in 2016 (No. 19 overall). Though the defensive end missed much of his first season while he recovered from shoulder surgery, Lawson showed glimpses of promise—he had 13 tackles, two sacks, and one forced fumble—and Bills fans are looking forward to seeing if he can take the next step toward becoming a dominant defensive lineman this year.

Fathers’ Day is an emotional day for Lawson. His father was killed in a car accident when Lawson was a 15-year-old high school junior, and Lawson decided to attend Clemson University so he could stay close to family (he is originally from Lake Wylie, S.C.).

The Bills published an incredible letter from Lawson to his father Sunday. The letter, which details how Lawson found inspiration in his father, is on the team’s official site.

“Early in my NFL career I learned from your example to surround myself with the right people,” Lawson wrote. “You always hung out with positive people. People who were going to impact your life in a positive way. I know not to be with people who are going to bring me down.”

Lawson said he usually visits his father’s cemetery on Fathers’ Day.

“I feel your spirit with me all the time, especially when I go back home,” Lawson wrote. “I know you spoke to my little brother and assured him you were in a better place. Hearing that situation puts my mind at ease. I like talking to you at night, but I know you’re with me every day. Happy Father’s day dad. I’ll talk to you soon.”

It’s a touching letter from son to father; they clearly had a special relationship. You can read the full message at