EL PASO, Texas (KVIA) -- El Paso Locomotive FC are in a push for the playoffs. With four games left in the season, they sit one point outside of the top eight. On Thursday the Locos put all of that aside and instead chose to focus their energy on making one families day.
"It was amazing," Cash Johnson said. "It felt like I meant something."
Getting to hang out with the Locos during a training session is an opportunity very few fans get. It's an opportunity his family never imagined would be possible.
“I’m in tears because this is unbelievable, our son was in a coma for 27 days," Ana Johnson, Cash's mother said.
In August of 2021, at just 17 years old, Cash was in a car crash that nearly took his life.
His parents were faced with the possibility of having to turn off his life support but his family wasn't ready to let go. Instead with the help of many they fought.
By Thanksgiving week of 2021, Cash started talking over a game of Uno, his first word 'green'. A month later he started walking and by Christmas he was at home.
Cash missed his entire senior year of high school rehabbing his injuries, but he has since graduated and is part of the Project Search Program with the Hospitals of Providence which, aids students with disabilities by placing them in work environments where they obtain necessary real-life workplace skills to help them gain active employment.
Cash played soccer growing up and has been a Locomotive fan ever since their inception. On Thursday, thanks to the Locos and the Hospitals of Providence, Cash was made a Locomotive player for the day. It included hanging out with the lads, kicking goals and being brought into the huddle.
“This is what life is about. We think as a team and when you’re in this little bubble that the world revolves around us getting into the playoffs, playing Charleston, the next game but at the end of the day this was bigger than that," El Paso Locomotive Head Coach Brian Clarhaut said. "It brings a lot into perspective to not only myself but to our group.”
“I know he’s got a meaning in this life I’m excited to see where that takes us," Ana said.
The Johnson's hope to pay forward all of the kindness they have received over the years and really hope their story will inspire other families who may find themselves in a fight for their lives.
Meanwhile the Locos will use Cash's story as motivation as they enter the final four games of the regular season in search of a playoff spot. They return to action on Saturday when they host Charleston Battery at 7.30 p.m. MT.