A local 9-year-old born with a rare form of vascular malformation is taking his inspiring attitude about life to the football field.
Ethan Perez will soon have his leg amputated, but on Saturday was named an honorary co-captain of his older brother's football team.
Ethan was born with Arterio-Venous Malformation or AVM in his left leg.
It's a degenerative disorder that's made it impossible for him to walk since he was four.
His amputation was scheduled for the end of September but has been re-scheduled.
But he's still an outgoing boy who just wants to run and play with his friends. A chance he received thanks to one local football community.
"I was talking to my football team earlier today about what courage means," said the coach of the Rosedale Rush Pee-Wee football team.
It's not your ordinary pre-game pep talk.
"In the face of true battle and to face something as difficult as what Ethan is going to go through and already gone through."
But Ethan's story is an inspiration both on and off the field. And it's earned him an honorary team captain position on the Rosedale Rush team.
"I get to say heads or tails for the team and I guess I just get to do stuff," Ethan said.
He gets to lead a football team Saturday, but he's always been a leader for those around him.
We first brought you his story earlier this month as Ethan uses crutches, a tricycle and hops to get around.
But AVM's are painful and his parents say amputation should help ease that pain.
"The pain should be gone, but there is some phantom pain we've heard about but the main AVM pain, that should be gone," said his mom Debbie Perez.
It's a story that's touched everyone in this football group. From the pee-wee league, to varsity, players and coaches, to the volunteers who started the whole project.
"It started with a jersey and she took it way farther. She made a phone call and all the teams showed up, all the coaches showed up just to support this little boy," said Team Mom Tiffany Whipple.
He gets to wear his own jersey with the same number as his favorite football player, Cam Newton.
And like a team captain, taking part in the coin flip.
For family members, its a special day.
"I guess it's pretty cool to see him get to do something," said his older brother Cole.
"The smile on his face, he's so excited. He's so happy. He always wanted to play football," Debbie said.
And thanks to this community, Ethan got his chance, lining up as a running back and taking the ball down the field for a touchdown.