In addition to being Travis Kelce’s mother, Donna also has another NFL son in the family named Jason Kelce, who plays for the Philadelphia Eagles. During the 2023 Super Bowl, which saw the two teams compete against each other, people saw the 71 year old supporting both sons with a jersey that was split down the middle, one side representing the Chiefs, the other the Eagles.
Here’s everything you need to know about one of the ultimate football moms.
Prior to her two sons entering the picture, Donna grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, with her younger brother Dan and their parents. When she was 12 years old, her mother passed away and her family relocated to the suburbs.
Although Donna’s father was against women playing sports, she explained that Mary supported her as she went on to compete at the Junior Olympics in track and field, and won. “She’s just a lovely lady,” Donna said about her stepmother. “I feel so fortunate that I was raised by her.”
Another milestone that Donna accomplished with her stepmother’s support was being the first person in her family to graduate from college. The Kelce matriarch attended Ohio University and went on to have a 30-year long career in banking as she specialised in commercial real-estate finances.
Along the way she met her husband, Ed Kelce. Ironically, the two met while Donna was grabbing a post-work drink before her date with someone else. She and Ed met and hit it off so well that she decided to cancel her planned date. “It was meant to be. It’s just the way it was,” Donna recalled telling her sons.
After being married for five years, Jason was born and, around 18 months later, came Travis. The Kelce brothers were raised in Cleveland Heights, Ohio, and went on to attend the University of Cincinnati to play football. According to Donna, raising two football players close in age didn’t come without breaking up a few fights.
Appearing on the Today show with Savannah Guthrie and Craig Melvin, the mom of two recalled breaking up “a lot of fights” when Jason and Travis were younger.
“Everything was a competition. It was a competition to see who could get to the table first, who could get to the front seat of the car — this is just typical sibling rivalry. They egged each other on,” she explained.
“Travis was alway trying to get at his older brother to pay attention to him, so there were a lot of fights,” Donna continued. “That’s just the way boys are.”
Shortly after both of their sons graduated, Donna and Ed got divorced after being married for 25 years.
“I don’t hate him. We’re friends to this day. We get along great,” Donna said to her sons. “We were like a tag team with you two. We got to do all sorts of fun things. When one of you had to go out of town, the other person would help with the other child. It was perfect.”
Despite both of her sons playing on opposing NFL teams, Donna claims she does not support one more than the other. Especially as the first mother to have two sons play against each other in the Super Bowl, she revealed on the Today show that she roots for the “offence” and “every time someone has a ball”.
But Donna did say that she roots for the Eagles slightly more. “Jason would say I’m going to root for the baby of the family, which is Travis. And I keep telling him: ‘No, you’ve given me grandchildren.’ So we’ll leave it at that,” Donna said. "It’s always about the grands.”