Pueblo West man with spinal illness meets Patriots at Mile High - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Pueblo West man with spinal illness meets Patriots at Mile High

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Aaron Cortese at Mile High Aaron Cortese at Mile High

A Pueblo West man battling a debilitating spinal disease continues to be an inspiration to those in his community and now, to the New England Patriots as well. 

Aaron Cortese got to meet his idol, Tom Brady, two years ago. 

On Sunday, the 20-year-old got to see Brady again, but this time, it was right on the field at Mile High before the game. 

Aaron also got to meet the rest of the Patriots and watch the team warm up before the game. 

News 5 spoke with Aaron's family earlier this week. As Aaron said, he was looking forward to seeing Brady again as the quarterback is someone who has helped him get through some difficult times. 

Aaron's friendship with Brady started two years ago.

Aaron said, "It's amazing." 

Since August 2015 the friendship has only continued to grow. 

"Makes me smile and it makes me know that he still remembers me."

Aaron's mom, Billie Jean Cortese, said, "Aaron's had a couple of rough years and they've kept in contact...checking on him and sending videos, and trying to help keep his spirits up as well." 

Aaron was born with Chiari malformation of the spine. He's paralyzed from the waist down and his spine is collapsing. While there is a surgery to fix it Aaron's heart and lungs would not withstand it. 

Aaron's mom said, "You live every day with hope and that's the one thing that...you always have to remember. You never know what tomorrow's going to bring so you have to live for the day." 

Which is exactly what the Cortese Family did on Sunday. 

"To watch Aaron to go out onto a football field and play the game himself would be what we would all dream of...since that is not possible at this point...this is something that can really help with his dream."

The Cortese Family got the invitation from the Patriots earlier this week. 

"We feel very honored that the Patriots chose Aaron," said Aaron's dad, David Cortese.

Aaron said, "I just want to say thank you. I just can't thank you enough."

It's days like Sunday that make Aaron stronger and it's a reminder to everyone to never give up.

Aaron said, "There's always hope."

The Cortese Family now has something else to look forward to. On Sunday, Patriots owner Robert Kraft told Aaron that he will have to bring the whole family out to New England in the future. 

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