"It's something he'll remember for the rest of his life."

By Meghan Overdeep
October 24, 2019

The University of Louisville Cardinal Marching Band was led by the cutest conductor during Saturday's game against Clemson.

No offense to the cheerleaders, but everyone agrees that four-year-old Cardinal superfan Allen Norton—who was born with Down syndrome—stole the halftime show.

Even the sound of thousands of supportive spectators couldn't distract him from his honorary role directing the band through the fight song.

His parents told WFMY-TV that it was an experience that neither them, nor Allen, will ever forget.

"It's something he'll remember for the rest of his life," his father Scott told the station.

The UofL also took the time to celebrate 10-year-old Carter Willett, who is battling Ewing's Sarcoma, during the game.

"We want to be a part of something that's much bigger than us as a band," band director Amy Acklin explained to WFMY-TV. "These are fighters; these are inspirational people. We think this is a very powerful idea that I think will connect with our community."

The band partnered with UofL Pediatrics and Norton Children's Hospital to make Allen's dream performance possible.

When he was only six months old, doctors discovered that Allen had holes in his heart. He underwent surgery to correct the condition at Norton Children's Hospital when he was just nine months old. Although he returns for regular checkups, his prognosis looks good.

"The diagnosis doesn't put a cap on what is possible, and that's what's exciting for us," mom Mary Beth told WFMY-TV. "This is Allen getting to show who he really is, and things are really limitless for him."

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