CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) --Seven-year-old Phineas Sandi is now the envy of Caniacs all over. This Chapel Hill boy we introduced to you last month got a once in a lifetime opportunity this week to spend an entire day with the team.
Phineas had an action packed day meeting all of the players, getting their autographs on his personalized jersey, and getting a front row seat to watch them practice before their game that evening.
"He's pretty excited about the game. He's a little bit scared of the pucks and all the missing teeth, though," teased his dad, Carlos Sandi.
But facing tough NHL players shouldn't be intimidating to young Phineas, considering what else he's already faced in his young life.
At the age of four, he was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. Although the disease initially proved resistant to conventional cancer treatments, he beat the odds, thanks to a clinical trial for immunotherapy. It was made possible, in part, by funding from the St. Baldrick's Foundation.
"[Phineas] had a very rare, and what we were told was incurable, cancer. But thanks to research and the work of St. Baldrick's Foundation, by all appearances he's cured," his dad exclaimed.
And now he's serving as a national ambassador for St. Baldrick's, which helped net him the opportunity to spend a day with the Hurricanes. It was an amazing opportunity the family was thankful for, leaving the normally exuberant youngster at a loss for words.
Read more: Chapel Hill boy named St. Baldrick's Ambassador
"I think he might be a little star-struck, but at the same time I think the longer he hangs out with us I think he'll realize we're just normal guys," said Hurricane's alternate captain Jordan Staal.
And at the end of the day, Phineas got to sound the siren to start the game with the boyfriend of the girl who donated him her bone marrow. She was also there to watch the game with Phineas and his family. His parents say the entire experience only reinforced their commitment to continuing to support St. Baldrick's.
"For our family, it's everything to us. St. Baldrick's, if it's not 'the' reason, it's definitely one of the main reasons that our son is with us here today," Carlos shared. "And we are incredibly grateful and want to do everything we can to give other families the same opportunity that we've had."
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