KNOXVILLE, Tennessee (WATE) – Ahead of Saturday’s UT game, some east Tennessee kids and their families got to join in on all the fun. A nonprofit called Special Spectators has partnered with UT and East Tennessee Children’s Hospital to bring patients the VIP treatment.
“[Iâm a] big fan of UT, âsaid Brady Fine.
Brady has lived in Tennessee his entire life. The 14-year-old said he had attended a few games before but hadn’t had this type of experience.
âThis game is special because I am becoming a special guest. I can go to the field.
Besides being a fan of Theft, Brady is also a patient at the East Tennesse Children’s Hospital.
âI have a health problem that prevents me from accumulating fat on my body or on my bones,â Brady explained.
“Basically I have to do like a bang every day and stuff like that.” they’ve been studying it for years since I was about eight. So it has been a very long journey.
Her mother, Jessie Keep, said on their long journey, East Tennessee Children’s Hospital was there every step of the way,
âWe were with the best people we could have been with at The Children’s. So they were able to guide us and support Brady. He was able to do a lot of amazing things with them.
Some of these activities include being a special guest at the UT Saturday game thanks to the kids and special spectators.
âSpecial spectators create unlimited access VIP gaming experiences for critically ill children and their families,â said Blake Rockwell, Founder and Executive Director.
He adds: âSeveral times, families tell us that this may be the first time they have seen their children smile since being diagnosed. “
Whether it’s seeing these kids smiling from ear to ear at the Flight Walk or being on the pitch at Neyland Stadium, this experience gives families a break from the daily struggle and allows children to simply be children.
âHe’s full of life, he always wants to try something new and do something different and adventurous,â Jessie Keep said of her son Brady.
For a UT fan like Brady, being on the pitch with the Neyland players was a dream come true.
âJust meeting a player is amazing,â he said.