John Cena, one of WWE’s biggest stars, originally met Nick Santillo on the Today Show last April to fulfill a lifelong wish. Nick was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, a condition where part of the heart is critically undeveloped. When John Cena took the time to meet with Nick, the two instantly shared a special bond, which continues strong to this day. This October, John spotted Nick in the crowd at a taping of WWE Smackdown. Nick was there waving a sign that read “Nick the Stitch is Here,” a reference to his made-up WWE personality.
“He gave me a big hug and asked how am I doing,” a shy Nick told TODAY.com. “I said ‘I am doing good.’ It was so awesome to see him. I am inspired by Nick.”
“If my running up those steps and saying hi to Nick continues to encourage him to fight to get well, even in a small way, then I absolutely had to do it,” Cena said.
Nick has recently battled some new illnesses but is now back at home and fighting on strong. According to his parents, he’s doing amazingly well in school and in his athletic activities. We wish Nick all the best in the future and are thrilled to see WWE being such a driving force in his life and providing him some encouraging role models.