Boy With SMA Gets Tickets for Panthers Playoff Game

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by Wendy Henderson |

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Jack Bolton is a 12-year-old Carolina Panthers super fan. He’s such a big fan that his parents arranged for Jack to be the team’s coach for a day back in 2013 (with some help from the Make-A-Wish Foundation, of course).

Boy with SMA becomes Carolina Panthers coach for a day.

ESPN reported that Jack was born with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a genetic condition that causes muscles to deteriorate with age, confining patients to a wheelchair. Through the Make-A-Wish Foundation, the Panthers invited Jack to be an assistant coach for a day and while he was there, he touched the hearts of all of the players. He stayed in touch with the team and sent them a poster last season with “Coach Jack Says I’m Watching You” printed on it. The poster now hangs on the locker room door to help motivate the team to go out each game and do the best they can for the young boy.

When defensive tackle Kyle Love found that he had a spare pair of tickets for a 2016 playoff game against the Arizona Cardinals, he knew right away who he wanted to give them to: Coach Jack. Even though Love wasn’t playing for the Panthers when Jack first visited the team, he now draws inspiration from the sign that hangs on the locker room door.

Coach Jack clearly worked his magic from the stands as the Panthers romped home to victory beating the Cardinals 49-15. Sadly for Jack, they went on to lose the Super Bowl to the Denver Broncos.

SMA patient gets his wish of a roll-in shower thanks to a radio show.

SMA News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.