FAMILY & PARENTING

Stuck In A Wheelchair, They Told This 9-Year-Old He’d Never Play Football. But Then…

by Catie Keck
Catie Keck is a New York-based staff writer at LittleThings who has produced work for various web and print publications.

Each and every one of us has a dream to do something extraordinary. For Jason Smith Jr., 9 years old in the video below, that dream was to make a touchdown.

Jason literally dreams of football; his dad is a coach and he helps his twin brother Jalen practice his tackles. But Jason himself can’t play as a result of his muscular dystrophy, which keeps him restricted to a wheelchair. Much like other children we’ve seen who’ve overcome the obstacles they encounter with muscular dystrophy, Jason refuses to be defeated by it. But his dream of playing football still lingered, until one night in 2012…

Watching and cheering on his brother from the sidelines, Jason was given a unique opportunity.

His dad, the football coach for his brother’s team, decided it was time for Jason to have his moment on the field. He suited his son up with just minutes to spare left in the game, and when they tossed him the ball for the play, one of his peers pushed him to the end zone for a touchdown. Jadel and both teams swarmed around him to congratulate him on his play.

“It was very surprising,” Jason recalls with a huge smile. It’s certainly a moment that will stick with him forever.

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