Teen with cerebral palsy makes track history in Phoenixville

A teenager from Phoenixville, Chester County is proving that nothing is impossible if you have the will and the support to succeed.
May 11, 2014 8:29:27 PM PDT
A teenager from Phoenixville, Chester County is proving that nothing is impossible if you have the will and the support to succeed.

One step at a time, 16-year-old Dillan McCants made history at Phoenixville Area High School with so many cheering him on.

"That was probably one of the best parts besides the fact that I was walking," he said.

Dillan is living with cerebral palsy and hasn't walked since he was a child.

He moved to Phoenixville two years ago, thinking he wouldn't have any friends and that people wouldn't understand his disability. Then he met Coach Dustin Poole.

"Everyone has a place in their life where they feel like they can't do something but I said, 'You can do the impossible!" said Coach Poole.

Poole coaches track at the school. He and a team of people worked with Dillan.

Practice makes perfect and it's something Dillan learned several days ago during a track and field meet at his high school.

The 10th grader walked 30 feet, finishing a track race.

"The moment when it happened and he walked across that finish line, I was in tears - the greatest moment in my coaching career ever," said Coach Poole.

"They are the best people I've ever met - the people at Phoenixville High School. And it's one of the best schools I've ever been too,' said Dillan.

Dillan earned a varsity letter in track for his special moment. Video of his accomplishment even got Dillan on ESPN Friday night.

"I was like, 'Oh my gosh, that's great!' I was really happy, we were both happy, it made our day," said Jamilla McCants, mother.

Dillan's proud mother says at their Bridge Street home, they've dealt with smoke damage from a fire next door. Plus two weeks ago, flood water got into the van used for Dillan.

However this inspiration is good news on this Mother's Day weekend.

"It lifts everybody spirits so that's just really great and it made him feel good about himself so that made me feel good," said McCants.

Dillan is looking forward to more track meets and more walking.

He has a lot he wants to accomplish before graduation and with the team he has supporting him, he'll definitely be able to get it done.


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