How the Portland Timbers made a cancer-stricken 8-year-old's wish come true
Atticus, you live up your name. That's for sure.
And it seems only fitting that a boy named Atticus would orchestrate an event that became almost mythical in its own time.
Atticus Lane-Dupre, a shaggy-haired 8-year-old boy diagnosed with cancer last fall, not only conjured up the idea of taking on the mighty Portland Timbers, but he of course starred in his side's 10-9 victory on Wednesday. He scored four goals, including the match-winner in front of 3,000-plus members of the Timbers Army at JELD-WEN Field.
Through Make-A-Wish Oregon, Atticus was granted his greatest wish: that his club, The Green Machine, would play against the Timbers.
Portland coach Caleb Porter took over the reins for the Green Machine, and ably guided them to victory over the Timbers side of Jack Jewsbury, Will Johnson, Darlington Nagbe, Mikael Silvestre, Futty Danso, Jake Gleeson, Ryan Kawulok, and Sebastian Rincon.
After the game, Atticus was awarded the traditional wood-slab for his goals and his Man of the Match performance. Timbers captain Will Johnson asked him to trade jerseys.
“I’ve actually never asked anyone to trade jerseys, so that was probably the first and only time in my career I’ll ask for somebody’s jersey," Johnson said after the match. "I’m quite proud to own his jersey.”
The jersey will serve as a nice reminder of the nutmeg Atticus pulled on Johnson before scoring one of his goals.
But of all the wishes in the world, why choose a match vs. the Timbers?
“Usually kids just choose to go to Disneyland with their family or getting something," Atticus explained. "I chose something that lots of people could do."
Like I said, Atticus, you certainly live up to your name.