Like a lot of children, 8-year-old Lauren Santora loves Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin. Unfortunately, Santora has had to spend much of her life watching her favorite player from the hospital.
Santora has Type 1 diabetes, a debilitating disease that has seen her hospitalized on several occasions in her young life. As part of the Kids Wish Network, Ovechkin granted Santora’s wish of meeting her hero. As part of her practice experience on Friday, Ovechkin and Santora took a shot at a 2-on-1 on Braden Holtby.
Beyond taking part in a practice, Santora met with Ovechkin before the team took the ice in order to have breakfast. Not only that, before the game on Saturday she’ll watch the team warm up from the Capitals bench, take a tour of the Caps locker room, and will be watching Saturday night’s game with her family from Ovechkin’s special seating section, called “Ovi’s Crazy 8s.”
During the first intermission of Saturday’s tilt, which sees Washington host the Tampa Bay Lightning, Santora will ride along as the ice gets cleaned between periods, and, once the game is over, she’ll spend a little more time with her icon.
All told, it’s a special day for a young girl that deserves nothing less.
(Thanks to @WeWillBonzai for the video.)