By Crystal Henderson, EnStarz | Feb 01, 2013 03:03 PM EST
Oscar-award winning Jennifer Hudson will sing with students from the Sandy Hook Elementary School before Sunday's Super Bowl, according to the National Football League.
NFL's spokesman Brian McCarthy said Thursday that the 31-year-old singer will sing "America the Beautiful" with 26 children from the Newton's Sandy Hook chorus, for a CBS pre-game special before the showdown between the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers.
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The NFL will pay for all airfare costs for the Sandy Hook choir members and their families to New Orleans in an effort to reach out to members of the Newton community after the school shooting that killed a total of 26 students and staff members in December 2012.
The league has provided support to the Sandy Hook community via, "S.H.E.S," with personal messages, stickers on players' helmets, personal words and victim's names on cleats and gloves, moments of silence before games, and donations for relief and grief causes.
In December, New York Giant's Victor Cruz met with the parents of Jack Pinto, a six-year-old among the 20 children shot dead. Cruz said he learned about Pinto through Twitter, and immediately contacted his family. The young football fan was buried in a replica of Cruz's jersey. "Just the thought of your little one, your son or daughter going through something like that, it was unbelievable to listen on the news." Cruz said.
A group of Sandy Hook students recently recorded a rendition of Over The Rainbow with singer Ingrid Michaelson to help raise money for charity. Proceeds will benefit the Newtown Youth Academy and the United Way of Western Connecticut.
Alicia Keys will sing the national anthem for the actual game. The Super Bowl starts at 3:30 p.m. PST or 6:30 p.m. eastern time.
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