'Spud' melts tough Rock's heart
By KEVIN MASTERMAN -- Toronto Sun
Sean Francis, 11, from West Virginia, got to meet The Rock at the Air Canada Centre before RAW is War. Sean had The Rock listen to his heart because it makes a swishing noise because of the valve in it. He also showed The Rock his scar from three surgeries, and he got a hug. Sean broke down and cried after meeting his hero. -- Craig Robertson, Toronto Sun
Professional WWF trash-talker the Rock broke with machismo and admitted he was not the toughest man to enter the Air Canada Centre yesterday after meeting 11-year-old Sean "Spud" Francis.
"You're a lot tougher than the Rock," the 29-year-old pro wrestler told Sean, who has undergone three open-heart surgeries after being born with a degenerative heart condition. "You went through a lot more than I did."
The Make A Wish Foundation set up the meeting outside of the ring to fulfill Sean's dream of meeting the champion of the WCW he's only seen on TV.
"This is the best day ever," said Sean, who has two artificial valves controlling blood flow into his heart.
The courageous boy from Fairmount, West Virginia has yet to let surgeries and pills slow him down, according to his mom, Theresa.
"He was actually up and jumping on his bed three days after his open heart surgery. He's got more energy than the whole family put together," said Theresa, who shook with excitement on her son's big day. Theresa said her son got the nickname Spud shortly after he was born. His small size spurned her brother to say he wasn't big enough to be a potato.