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Saturday
Sep022017

Teen recovering from brain cancer becomes a Baltimore Oriole for a day

Patrick Smith/Getty Images(BALTIMORE) -- A Maryland teen who recently battled brain cancer had his dream come true when he became a member of the Baltimore Orioles team for a day.

Jimmy Martino signed a one-day contract with the Baltimore Orioles on Friday, becoming an honorary member of the Major League Baseball team. Not only did he throw out the ceremonial first pitch, he also met several baseball players, including his favorite, Adam Jones.

The 17-year-old student's wish came true thanks to Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic, which grants the wishes of children and teens with life-threatening medical conditions in the region.

Martino's father Pat told ABC News that his son was diagnosed with brain cancer on Christmas Day 2016.

"He had been complaining and had severe headaches and nausea in the weeks leading up," Pat Martino, 46, recalled.

A day later, the Fallston, Maryland teen underwent brain surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. He was later treated with rounds of chemotherapy and radiation. Back in July, Martino's mother Cindy told ABC News that doctors said their son was now in remission.

The family got yet another silver lining on Friday when they were watching Martino's wish come true.

During a press conference, which kicked off the day, Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations Dan Duquette said, "As a parent, you’re just grateful that your kids are healthy, and it’s kids like these who have to go out and fight the fight every day. They remind you to appreciate that health within your family."

"It was a really cool experience," Martino told ABC News, noting that his favorite part was "meeting the guys and being able to throw out the first pitch."

Cindy Martino, 47, added that the day "just culminated his whole journey that he's had since Christmas Day through now."

"It was very special to see that and he deserved it," Pat Martino continued. "We were just so glad to have that experience and we're thankful Make-A-Wish provided that opportunity."

In a statement, Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic told ABC News: "We are so grateful for the efforts and partnership that the Baltimore Orioles extended to help grant Jimmy’s wish."

"His wish day was everything he had hoped for and more," the statement continued. "Throughout the day, as each surprise and moment was revealed, Jimmy’s smile grew larger and larger, and the joy his parents felt was evident as they watched their son’s most heartfelt wish come to life."

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