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Children battling cancer take the field for Sunday Night Lights game

Lindbergh High School helps with the 13th annual football game for children fighting serious diseases.

ST. LOUIS — With the marching band blasting and cheerleaders waving, two teams of heroes ran onto the field at Lindbergh High School. 

Sunday evening, children with cancer and serious diseases put on their gold and green uniforms to play a game of flag football. 

It's called Sunday Night Lights

Organized in 2010, the game started after Lindbergh freshman Jake Franzel was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer. 

"We've never turned down a child," Sunday Night Lights organizer Lori Krueger tells 5 On Your Side, "It's primarily children with cancer and other serious childhood illnesses."

For the past two years, Sunday Night Lights looked a little different. In 2020, the night honoring the kids went virtual. In 2021, organizers held a parade. "We are back on the field this year and it's wonderful," beams Krueger.

Coaching this year, Daniel Crum II recounted his past experiences, "Playing for five to six years, referring for a year or two and now I'm coaching...for the rest of my life probably."

A future his parents didn't know would be possible, "He has a brain tumor," Daniel's mom Elizabeth tells 5 On Your Side, "an optic glioma tumor on the left eye, so he is very visually impaired."

In remission, he's been able to attend all 13 years of Sunday Night Lights games. His dad, Dan Crum, says the best part for his son is, "being with all the other kids, younger and older. He's just a people person. He's always been outgoing."

No matter what color jersey, gold or green, the kids are all heroes on the field.

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