GLEN ALLEN, Va. -- Eleven-year-old Henry Payne had a dream to play football with his older brother, despite his disability.
“He was born with cerebral palsy,” said Henry’s father, Burke. “It’s been a long hard battle, but he’s a good smart kid. Everybody loves Henry.”
Burke Payne’s son, George, plays football with the Glen Allen Ravens.
“I would describe Henry as one little boy just wanting to play football with his brother,” said Raven’s President Chris Wood.
Burke said the past few years have been tough on their family.
“April 21st 2015, my wife Laurie lost her life to ovarian cancer,” he said. “She was diagnosed cancer free for only three months, but it came back in January and just ate her alive.”
Despite the tragedy, Burke always makes sure he and his children attend football practices and games. Henry plays for Jacob’s Chance football league, a program for special needs children.
Saturday, Henry suited up with the Glen Allen Ravens at the RF&P Park on Mountain Road to make his dream of scoring a touchdown come true.
As running back and being blocked by his brother, Henry ran the five yards into the Laurel Panthers' end zone to score the winning touchdown.
“High five! You did really good,” George said.
Burke said he knows his wife was watching over her sons on the field helping them win.
“She’s definitely here with Henry,” he said. “She’s always here with Henry and George.”
The Glen Allen Ravens are part of the the Metropolitan Youth Football League. Henry’s touchdown helped the Ravens win their division and stay undefeated.
The final score was 33-0.