Hope Teen Overcomes Illness, Wins Super Bowl Trip

- HOPE, AR --A teen from Hope is heading to the Super Bowl courtesy of the NFL.

The league is recognizing Nate Carter for his feats on and off the field as one of a five winners in a national contest.

Carter was preparing for his seventh grade season as quarterback on the football team in 2012 when he was diagnosed with Wegener's Granulometosis, a rare disease that forced him into a coma and months of chemotherapy.

"I couldn't walk one day couldn't, raise my arm the next day," Carter explains.

Less than two years ago, he was rushed by helicopter to Arkansas Children's Hospital where doctors found two pints of blood in his lungs and diagnosed him with the rare illness affecting his blood vessels.

"They said I wouldn't be able to play any sports," he says.

"It was pretty devastating," says Anthony Carter, Nate's dad.

Determined to suit up as soon as possible, Carter relied on lessons learned on the gridiron.

"Sports was a big thing. Dedication, even during his illness to get better and get back on his feet," his father says.

The next year, the eighth grader was back in the game as starting quarterback.

"Just proving my doctors wrong, that I could get back to playing sports like I used to," Carter says.

"Shows other kids what having courage and believing in yourself does for you," says football coach Jay Turley.

Coach Jonathan Turner says, "It came out to be a miracle to tell you the truth."

Nate penned his story for an NFL contest online, sharing how he'd dropped from 115 pounds to 80 due the illness but found the strength to bounce back.

His triumphant tale helped him beat out thousands of others to become one of five people to win dream trips to the Super Bowl.

"Words could not describe, I was so happy," he says.

Nate's mother, Bitsy Carter says, "Everything he's wanted to do he's fought for. He is absolutely an amazing kid."

Nate says he is rooting for the Seahawks.

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