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A teenager with Down syndrome is a beloved member of his high school football team, even though he rarely gets a chance to hop on the turf.

Robby Heil is usually the team’s water boy at Novi High School in Michigan. But they had a surprise for him during this weekend’s game after they learned his mother has cancer. She was on the sidelines, like always, when Robbie had his big moment and rushed 20 yards to score his first-ever touchdown.

I presently have cancer and this team has just been so instrumental in helping me get him to practice while I’m at chemo and it takes a village to raise my son and this village has been really outstanding,” Debbie Heil told Fox Detroit.

Debbie recognizes how much the team has helped her and her family during this rough time.

Despite the amazing opportunity, his coach simply saw it as a way to pay him back for all the joy he brings the team.

No matter how bad a day he’s having, it’s a smile from ear to ear and the opportunity to put that helmet on tonight, it brought tears to my eyes tonight and tears all over the place,” said coach Jeff Burnside.

The opposing team was in on the surprise and even had a custom jersey made for Robby.

Novi High School would go on to win the game.

SOURCE: Fox Detroit  | IMAGE CREDIT: Getty


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High School Football Player With Down Syndrome Scores Heartwarming Touchdown  was originally published on