Boy With Down Syndrome Makes Winning Touch Down

With the start of school and the beginning of autumn, football season is in high gear. This past Friday was particularly magical for Novi High School in Michigan. During the game against South Lyon East, the Novi team decided to make this game the most important one of one of their peers’ lives.

Robby Heil has been the waterboy for the Novi team for four years, as long as he’s been at the school. He loves football and has always wanted to play, but Robby has Down syndrome. The team considers him one of their own however, and on Friday, they decided to make his dream come true. Head coach Jeff Burnside said, “This is something that we thought we could do to bring some joy, hopefully some outstanding memories.”

In the second quarter, Coach Burnside put Robby into play. As the team had planned, they handed it right to him, and protected him as he sprinted straight for the endzone. He scored! Robby did an excellent touchdown dance, but his teammates were so enthusiastic about congratulating him that it wasn’t caught on tape. Don’t worry – he recreated it on WXYZ’s Sports Cave in the video below!

The team’s gesture was made all the more touching by the fact that Robby’s mother Debbie was watching from the stands. Debbie has been diagnosed with terminal bone cancer and the pair definitely needed the wondrous night that the Novi High School Football team gave them. Debbie told reporters, “I’ve always been proud of him being the waterboy, or as people call him the hydration manager, but this was incredible. He’s Rudy tonight, he’s Rudy.”