KANSAS CITY, Mo. – There was a special birthday surprise Wednesday night for a young Kansas City boy fighting cancer.
Family and teammates of JaMaurii Baker decorated their cars with balloons, streamers and birthday wishes and paraded outside Children’s Mercy Hospital, where Baker is being treated.
See the sweet celebration in the video player above.
The 11-year-old is a star running back for the Kansas City Ravens, an inner-city youth football team founded in 2001.
In May, following an injury, doctors discovered bone cancer in JaMaurii’s right leg. He’s been in and out of the hospital since.
“Every day, the doctor asks him what’s his most favorite thing, and he still says football, even though there may be a chance that he won’t be able to play football again,” said his mom, Jonae Baker.
“It’s not only about him playing football. We love Maurii,” said his coach, Melvin McDavis. “We love him beyond football.”
Davis called Baker one of the best young football players in Kansas City.
And as football often shows, even with the greatest of hurdles, perseverance is about not giving up.
“We know Maurii’s going to put on this uniform again,” McDavis said.
Baker is expected undergo surgery on his leg in two weeks.