A young Rebel fan gets VIP treatment at the IPF
Ole Miss fans of all ages enjoyed the Meet the Rebels Day 2013 last Saturday, August 17, but it is probably safe to say none had a better time than 10-year old Rebel Chance Tetrick.
Chance is waging a fierce battle against leukemia, spending much of his time at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, but he was still determined to make his way back home to Oxford to see his beloved Rebel football team.
Recently, HottyToddy.com featured the inspiring relationship between Chance and the Ole Miss team and coaching staff. Earlier this summer, Chance had the opportunity to visit with some members of the team, as well as tour the Ole Miss football facilities. Click here to read the story on a young Rebel’s fan courageous battle.
On Saturday, inside the packed Indoor Practice Facility, the young Oxford resident was able to take pictures and gather autographs from all the Rebel players.
Chance’s legs were a tad weary following all the chemo and steroids he received earlier in the week, but he got a little help from special teams/linebackers coach Tom Allen and his kids, Thomas and Brittany, who were there to make sure the young boy had a great day.
“They obtained a wheelchair for Chance and allowed him to wheel behind all the tables instead of trying to go through each line,” Jeff Tetrick, Chance’s father, said.
“Every single player autographed Chance’s poster, and he got to take pictures with many of them,” Tetrick added. But the Rebel football team’s love for this little fighter extended beyond merely signing a poster or taking a picture.
“Just about every coach and player talked to Chance, shook his hand, and said they were praying for him,” Tetrick said. “Most of them remembered his name and told him how glad they were he was able to make it to Meet the Rebels Day.”
But it didn’t stop there—as Chance visited at length with Head Coach Hugh Freeze, Coach Tom Allen, Coach Dave Wommack, Coach Matt Luke, and Coach Bruce Johnson.
“The players and coaches were thrilled to see Chance, and he had fun seeing and talking to them, too,” Tetrick said.
Thomas Allen (Coach Allen’s son) took Chance to see the new locker room, which, according to the Tetricks, must surely be one of the top-5 locker rooms in the nation.
The love the Rebels have for this young boy, and vice versa, is obvious.
“Some of the players even sought out Chance and wanted pictures with him on their phones and iPads—like running back Jeff Scott,” Tetrick said.
Chance also met some of his supporters while he was there. He has an army of people who keep up with him on Twitter, via his dad’s account.
“Chance got to meet three of his Twitter ‘Prayer Warriors’ who were also in attendance at Meet the Rebels,” Tetrick said.
Following the great day at the Indoor Practice Facility, Chance and his mom and sister returned to St. Jude, and the boy’s father added, “He had fun away from St. Jude, for sure!”
For those who are wondering, Chance’s favorite players are Denzel Nkemdiche, Donte Moncrief, and Bo Wallace. However, the dedicated Rebel fan had one more player he hoped to meet Saturday and add to his list.
He wanted to talk to the nation’s number one recruit, defensive end Robert Nkemdiche, and he was not disappointed. According to Jeff, his son told Robert he was, “going to be a breakout star this year.” There is no doubt Chance is correct on that prediction.
HottyToddy.com asked Chance what the team’s record will be this season, and he quickly replied, “Perfect, 12-0!” Rebels everywhere hope Chance is correct on that, as well!
— Evelyn VanPelt, HottyToddy.com, Sports Reporter
Evelyn was born in Texas, but has strong family ties to Mississippi. Her relatives are from Hinds County, and her daughter received three degrees from Ole Miss–culminating with a PharmD in 2012. Evelyn studied English at Texas A&M University, but is an Ole Miss Rebel at heart, falling in love with the both the school and Oxford over a decade ago when her daughter began school. Evelyn has a home in Texas, but spends as much time as possible in Mississippi where her daughter still lives. She enjoys covering Ole Miss football for gridirongirl.org and HottyToddy.com. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org