11-year-old cancer survivor Sam hits first home run, inspiring his father, Drew

When your kid has cancer, life’s milestones like this one aren’t guaranteed, making it all the sweeter.

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  •  4 min

St. Jude patient Sam hit his first homerun and his father Drew was there to witness it.

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The bat cracked against the ball, and Sam must not have known at first that it was gone. He shot toward first base, but as he got close to the bag, he glanced toward centerfield and realized he could take his time. 

He had hit it out of the ballpark.

So, he skipped to first base and jogged to second, third and home, where his teammates had linked arms. They were screaming for him, jumping up and down.

Sam's first home run

It was a beautiful hit. Right out to centerfield and against the wind.  

At 11 years old, Sam is a pediatric cancer survivor, having undergone treatment for neuroblastoma at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital® when he was just a toddler.

His dad, Drew, who is a team coach, never thought he’d see the day his son would hit his first home run.

“It surprised the heck out of me, and quite honestly, I figured he would never do it. He has never hit one in practice.”

Hey Drew, what's your best "dad joke"?

Drew said he’s never been so happy to be wrong about anything.  

“To have battled with this dude from his near-death fight against cancer to this day is something special to see as a dad, and I thank God for this.”

The baseball team has played in St. Jude benefits in honor of Sam. 

The other parents cheered for Sam, and some even cried.

“It was a moment I’ll never forget, and I’m so happy for him,” said Drew.

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