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Adrien’s 49ers WISH presented by Brocade

Posted Oct 30, 2014

Eleven-year-old Adrien Quintero sought out on a mission to meet his 49ers heroes Colin Kaepernick and Patrick Willis, and experience the infamous 49ers Café. Together, the 49ers and Make-A-Wish Foundation made that happen through 49ers WISH presented by Brocade.

Eleven-year-old Adrien Quintero sought out on a mission to meet his 49ers heroes Colin Kaepernick and Patrick Willis, and experience the infamous 49ers Café.  Together, the 49ers and Make-A-Wish Foundation made that happen through 49ers WISH presented by Brocade. 49ers WISH works with organizations like Make-A-Wish and the Dream Foundation to enrich the lives of individuals with life limiting conditions by providing them with an once-in-a-lifetime 49ers experience. Living with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, Quintero has faced adversity, though has never let it interfere with his love and knowledge of the game, and his determination to surpass goals. His acuteness on statistics and sports history baffled 49ers staff and players, and his sweet demeanor melted the hearts of all.

“I want to ask Patrick Willis if he would’ve stuck to criminal justice and become a police officer,” stated Adrien who had scripted questions similar to those of a professional sportscaster.

Joined by his mother, uncle and younger brother, Adrien absorbed more franchise facts as the family toured the halls of the SAP Performance Facility where players and coaches report for work on a daily basis. Adrien’s face lit up as they explored behind-the-scenes, observing Hall of Fame jerseys such as Joe Montana, Ronnie Lott and Bob St. Claire, and five Lombardi Trophies from each of the 49ers Super Bowl championship victories.

After the tour, Adrien’s family was led to Levi’s® Stadium to watch the 49ers prepare for their matchup against the Eagles the following day. Father of 49ers Head Coach Jim Harbaugh, Jack Harbaugh took a knee by Adrien and in a very fatherly and coach-like manner, began breaking down the offensive and defensive schemes which were being practiced before his eyes. The moment was surreal and truly heartwarming.

“We are so thankful to the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the 49ers,” said mother of Adrien, Maria, “I can see the excitement in the expressions on his face, and know this is a day he will remember forever.”

Soon the team huddled for the breakdown, signaling the end of practice. Adrien made his way to the center of the huddle, and Coach Harbaugh welcomed him to the team. This cued Adrien’s big moment—the opportunity to help breakdown the team with a, “1,2,3 win!” The adrenaline-rushing experience continued as players such as safety Eric Reid handed over their gloves to Adrien and autographed his football and jersey. Colin Kaepernick and Patrick Willis graciously engaged with Quintero and his family and posed for photos fit for a holiday card.

After a big practice, everyone needs to refuel, so Adrien headed to the 49ers Café to dine with the 49ers and their families. Soaking up the salad bar and special of the day—a very fitting and kid-friendly menu of French fries and chicken tenders, Quintero took in the full experience, anxiously awaiting what the following day had in store.

Come Sunday, Maria, Adrien and the rest of their family arrived to a much different and adrenaline-pumping gameday atmosphere at Levi’s® Stadium. Adrien received warm welcomes on the sidelines during pregame warmups as 49ers staff and players recognized him from the day prior. After the family took their seats in the stands, it was evident that Adrien served as the extra boost the 49es needed to seal the win. The two-day experience was fulfilling for all, and most importantly, it was truly a wish-come-true.


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