Chicago Blackhawks, Make-A-Wish team up to lift spirits of ailing young fan (video)
The Chicago Blackhawks, in conjunction with Make-A-Wish, hosted a very special young fan on Monday in an illustration that today’s pro athletes still can serve as heroes to the children that worship them.
Gabriel Colon, 12, suffers from acute lymphoid leukemia, a condition that affects the white blood cells in bone marrow. Colon has undergone a harrowing three years filled with treatments and dealing with the many side effects that go along with battling such a devastating illness.
The youngster has emerged from his battle feeling healthier, which provided an excellent opportunity for Make-A-Wish Foundation to organize a day where Colon could pay a visit to Blackhawks facilities on Monday.
Wearing a custom Blackhawks jersey, Colon hung around in the locker room, met his favorite players, Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and Andrew Shaw. He also chatted with Marian Hossa and head coach Joel Quenneville.
Colon also had the chance to take the ice, skate around shoot some pucks alongside his hockey-playing heroes. He even got to do some passing drills with Kane and Toews (above).
Following practice, Gabriel and Kane took a seat in the locker room, where the Blackhawks superstar signed some gear for the young man.
“It was just cool to be down there. I’ve always wanted to skate with them, and I’m glad I did it,” Colon said about the day, via For the Win.
“It’s amazing. He’s had to give up so much the last three years,” Colon’s father, Anthony, added. “So it’s really great that Make-A-Wish and a Chicago organization can get together to bring a great memory.”
No matter what’s come up to this point and what Gabriel and his family have yet to face in his ongoing battle, his mother put it all in perspective when saying that for one day, the fact that Gabriel was able to forget about everything related to his illness, all the trial and tribulations, even for one morning was all that mattered.
“There’s no greater joy than seeing your son happy,” she said. “It was awesome.”
(all images courtesy of Chicago Blackhawks/Instagram)