ATLANTA - Surrounded by football, a NASCAR driver made a young fan's dream come true. 12-year-old Austin Freeman thought he was getting a tour of the College Football Hall of Fame on Thursday when, from around a corner, his favorite NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. showed up to say hello.
"This is amazing," said Freeman. "Just thank you so much. Oh my gosh. I'm trying not to tear up about this. This is a lot."
Freeman is battling a rare form of pediatric bone cancer called Ewing's Sarcoma. He works with CURE Childhood Cancer, a nonprofit cancer research foundation in Atlanta, who set up Thursday's surprise.
Earnhardt and Freeman played some catch at the Hall of Fame's indoor field, raced remote controlled cars and toured the Hall's exhibits. Earnhardt gave him plenty of items to take home including a hat, team uniform and tickets to attend the upcoming race at Talladega.
"Hopefully he can get to some more races after Talladega," said Earnhardt. "Especially if we win. He'll definitely be a good luck charm at Talladega for us."
Earnhardt is currently 12th in the Chase for the Sprint Cup field.