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Young Nebraska cancer patient whose touchdown run went viral now in remission, his father says

  • Jacks-TD-Run-Football-Taylor-Martinez

    Nebraska's Taylor Martinez guides Jack Hoffman, then 6, of Atkinson, Neb., down the field for his touchdown play during a special segment dedicated to Hoffman during the second half of the Red-White spring game at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb.

    <ASSOCIATED PRESS

  • Jacks-TD-Run-Football-Rex-Burkhead

    Jack stands with former Nebraska football player Rex Burkhead after meeting with President Barack Obama on April 29 in Washington

    <ASSOCIATED PRESS

Jacks-TD-Run-Football-Taylor-Martinez

Nebraska's Taylor Martinez guides Jack Hoffman, then 6, of Atkinson, Neb., down the field for his touchdown play during a special segment dedicated to Hoffman during the second half of the Red-White spring game at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb.

ASSOCIATED PRESS Enlarge

OMAHA, Neb. — The young boy with cancer whose touchdown run at the Nebraska spring football game was viewed by millions on the Internet is in remission, his father said today.

Jacks-TD-Run-Football-Rex-Burkhead

Jack stands with former Nebraska football player Rex Burkhead after meeting with President Barack Obama on April 29 in Washington

ASSOCIATED PRESS Enlarge

Jack Hoffman, now 8, captured the hearts of Nebraska football fans when, with the players’ help, he ran 69 yards to score during April’s intrasquad game. His scamper was viewed nearly 8.4 million times on YouTube and replayed on national television. The video also won an ESPY award as the “Best Moment.”

Jack’s father, Andy Hoffman, said the good news about the brain tumor came after an MRI test.

“Doctors came in and said this tumor is rock-solid stable,” Hoffman said, noting doctors compared Wednesday’s MRI to a baseline MRI done in June and saw the malignancy had stopped growing.

The encouraging news was tempered by warnings from the doctors: More than half of all kids in Jack’s situation have relapses.

“We pray like crazy and hope Jack isn’t in that segment,” Hoffman said. But it’s a long journey, he continued, “and the doctors have done a good job of preparing us.”

Jack’s tumor grew back after two surgeries in 2011, and it occupies a spot near his brain stem. The location is considered inoperable now, Hoffman said, but that could change.

The boy’s future is filled with MRI scans: one every three months for the next year, every six months for the year following, and then once a year.

Jack is a second-grader at a school near the family’s home in Atkinson, a city of about 1,240 people in north-central Nebraska.

The rest of his family will continue to raise money for cancer research through the Team Jack Foundation.

“We’re not living life in fear,” Hoffman said. “We’re busy living.”

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