Originally written on Next Impulse Sports  |  Last updated 3/15/13
These days, it seems billionaire hedge fund manager Chris Hansen can do wrong (at least in the eyes of NBA fans in the Northwest). But recently, it was actually the ex-Mrs. Hansen, Francine, who helped make a dream come true for one of LeBron James’ biggest fans. Joey Cawyer, 23, of Cheney, WA (near Spokane), was diagnosed with stage IV brain cancer in April 2010, and doctor’s gave him only one year to live. One of Cawyer’s closest friends, Drew Peterson — an aspiring sports writer attending Washington State University — used the power of social media to grab the attention of the NBA’s most visible star, in hopes of arranging a meeting. After an initial Facebook plea from Joey’s mother, Cindy, Drew took the movement to Twitter, where his #MeetJoey hashtag took on a life of its own: “After she made that Facebook post I made another Facebook post and just said, ‘Lets take it to Twitter,’” Peterson said. “Everybody #MeetJoey. We just got a few of our Facebook friends involved and then it took off.” College basketball personality Dick Vitale, UFC fighters, Seattle Seahawk safety Jeron Johnson and Gonzaga basketball players Kevin Pangos and Sam Dower saw the hashtag movement and retweeted it within days. People from around the country reached out to the trio, sending direct messages through the social media sites offering sympathy. “We were getting 800 retweets and thousands of followers,” Lindsey said. “I don’t even know if they knew Joey.” “I knew me and Thang got messages from people who were like, ‘Oh, I’m up in Alaska and I hope this #MeetJoey thing works out,’” she added. “This other guy is like, ‘Oh, I’m down in Florida and I’ve never met Joey, but I’ve been retweeting.’” The meeting would have to take place in Portland in early January, as Cindy knew time was running out before inevitable hospice care. And that’s where Francine Hansen took over: “She has connections around the whole industry sports-wise,” (Thang) Nguyen said. “She got in contact with the people who knew LeBron and she told them to have him check his Twitter. “He checked it at breakfast.” Francine Hansen spoke with the Trailblazers front office. She arranged tickets for the group as well as post-game access passes. On January 10th, the Miami Heat rolled into Rip City, while Joey and his friends piled in a Lexus and headed out from Spokane to meet them. Miami lost to the Trailblazers that night, but it’s a trivial footnote to a night of greater importance: “Where’s Joey? Where’s Joey?” LeBron James walked past the throng of fans who stood hoping for an autograph. The Miami Heat just blew a 13-point halftime lead in a 92-90 loss to the Portland Trailblazers  Jan. 10. But something else was on James’ mind. “I have to meet Joey,” he said. James saw Joey Cawyer, a 23-year-old from Cheney, WA., confined to his wheelchair. James bent down and gave him a hug. He turned to the man’s mother and told her to stay strong. Two weeks after meeting his hero — and 32 months after his initial diagnosis — Joey Cawyer succumbed to the cancer. But his friends will always have that one final moment together, spent with the greatest player on Earth. [SportsPressNW] Article found on: Cosby Sweaters
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Kevin Sumlin: Texas A&M players have 'chip on their shoulder'

WATCH: Elvis Andrus steals home against Padres

Seahawks went on Hawaiian vacation to ease SB tension

Robert Kraft: Deflategate 'most overblown story' in NFL

Top 10 storylines for Week 1 of college football season

Jim Tressel once sent touching note to family of Michigan OL

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Sony cut 'Concussion' scenes to avoid angering NFL

Ryan Clark: Trent Richardson is 'worst RB of all time'

Report: David Feherty won't be back at CBS Sports

Warren Moon: RG3 needs to start taking the blame

Lovullo: I don’t see Hanley Ramirez playing left field again in 2015

Judge Berman’s one-sentence order repeats Deflategate decision timeline

Harbaugh named starting QB but won't announce it

Ohio State downplays revenge talk ahead of Va. Tech rematch

WATCH: D-backs pitcher fails on quick pitch attempt

Ex-FSU WR Snoop Minnis trolls rival Florida in great way

Suspicous photo may lead to drug test for CC Sabathia

How the Houston Astros went from garbage to gold

Jack Eichel plans to move in with teammate Matt Moulson

Report: Bills GM 'went rogue’ in cutting Fred Jackson

Terrance Knighton irked by Redskins-Kardsashians comparison

Connor Cook on not being named Michigan State captain: 'It stinks'

Danny Amendola’s advice to those on roster bubble? ‘Control what you can’

Dallas Cowboys: Rookies to watch

Apple reportedly sought exclusive rights to new Bill Simmons podcast

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Top 10 storylines for Week 1 of college football season

Underdogs: Hopefuls that can shock in the World Cup

Manfred digs Shoeless Joe a deeper grave

Why Mike Trout ain't right

The Opening Drive: Jamal Anderson warns UM fans before heading to Salt Lake City

Best and worst MLB players in August

RG3 blames intern for liking Instagram post trashing owner

Four most surprising roster cuts from NFL teams

Raiders cut Trent Richardson

Caroline Wozniacki smoking cover of ‘Rhapsody’

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker