CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The Panthers welcomed a special young man to the practice field Tuesday.

Six-year-old George Gring from Houston received his wish to practice with quarterback Cam Newton and the rest of the Panthers as part of the NFL's partnership with the Make A Wish Foundation.

Gring arrived at practice alongside Newton wearing the same flashy high-top gold cleats as his favorite football player and a red No. 2 practice jersey. He went through warmups and caught a few passes before grabbing a quick hug from his mom, Katherine, on the sideline.

"It was kind of cool," Gring said of the experience.

Gring is recovering from Burkitt's Lymphoma, an intestinal-based cancer. He was diagnosed in December and has received five chemotherapy treatments.

The cancer is now in remission.

Gring became a Carolina fan last season when his parents would bring him tapes of football games to watch from his hospital bed or when he was uncomfortable.

"He really liked the Panthers and their logo and then he really got into Cam Newton because Cam has such a vibrant personality," Katherine Gring said. "Whenever something was uncomfortable we would put on a Panthers game for him and that would get him through anything uncomfortable."

Gring said he likes Newton because "he runs fast and throws good."

Newton took Gring into the locker room before practice, got him taped up and presented him with identical shoes to what he wore out to practice.

"I know he had on some sweet shoes — that's all I know," Newton said.

The quarterback said it was a special experience.

"Anytime as a player, as a role model, as whoever, you get a chance to give back and make somebody's day, man, I'm all for it," Newton said.

Gring will return to Charlotte and serve as the team's "Keep Pounding" drummer for the Panthers' Aug. 17 preseason game against Kansas City.

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