One of the greatest parts about being a professional athlete is all the amazing things they can do for children. Eight-year-old Jack Bolton not only got to spend time with his favorite team but he was able to be the head coach of the Carolina Panthers for a day thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Botlon has spinal muscular atrophy, which is an autosomal recessive disease that affects mobility, the reason for the child’s inability to get around without a motorized wheel chair. However, the disease did not prevent him from being the best head coach Carolina has ever seen during Saturday’s Fan Fest scrimmage. What is even better is that Bolton had the biggest smile in the world, something that is a rarity for the young man.
“He doesn’t smile pretty much at all. And I’m trying to think of when I’ve seen him smile that big, and it’s never been that big ever,” Bolton’s sister Eleanor said, according to News 14 in Charlotte.
Even though football is Bolton’s pride and joy, he has never been able to play it. For that reason, he has turned to coaching, which is where he can help others improve their game.
“He’s been coaching his classmates at recess for several years and thought he was pretty good at it,” Holly Bolton, Jack’s mother, told News 14 in Charlotte.
Bolton signed a one-day contract with the team and was determined to help the players improve after watching them perform. He even said in his speech to the team (that Ron Rivera read) that he would be “looking for mistakes while on the field watching”.
There is no question it is a day that Bolton will never forget. Hopefully, the Panthers will be able to use what they learned from the youngster and turn it into a successful season.