down syndrome

You won’t see a moment better than this during the football season at any level.

Robby Heil, who is a senior with Down syndrome at Novi High School in Michigan, has been the football team’s water boy for the past four years. On Friday, he was able to get in the game, and scored a 36-yard touchdown.

The touchdown was amazing itself, but who was watching on the sideline made it even more special.

Robby’s mother, Debbie, is terminally ill with bone cancer. But she was able to be at the game, on hand to see her son score his first touchdown and live out his dream. She told WXYZ about the moment:

“I dropped to the ground because I was so emotional when I saw him make that touchdown,” Robby’s mom, Debbie Heil said. “I’ve always been proud of him being the water boy, or as people call him the hydration manager, but this was incredible, he’s Rudy tonight, he’s Rudy.”

A teammate of Robby’s, Anthony D’annibale told him before he went into the game, “You mean a lot to this team, I’m serious you’re a big part of this.”

That’s a damn good teammate.


About Harry Lyles Jr.

Harry Lyles Jr. is an Atlanta-based writer, and a Georgia State University graduate.