PITTSFORD, N.Y. — Maybe the toughest 8-year-old in Pittsford, Craig Winter was just 2 when he was diagnosed with brain cancer.
The following fall, Pittsford football played Aquinas with Craig serving as Pittsford's honorary captain, in a game that evolved into the Teddi Bowl.
This year Pittsford will play Victor in the Teddi Bowl, an annual game benefiting Camp Good Days.
"He's been using those services for a long, long time but also a positive face with a great smile that helps our community understand how powerful these young people are, including Craig and how powerful he is," said Pittsford head coach Keith Molinich.
Back when he was a Panther, Charlie Shuman introduced Craig to Pittsford football through the foundation he created called "Big Helping Little." With Shuman off at Penn State as a scholarship offensive lineman, the Panthers have made Craig an important member of the program.
"Now he's a waterboy for us, he's no longer just our little buddy, he's actually our here doing work for us, so we're excited to have him aboard," said Molinich.
Five years later, Craig is still battling cancer and his courage inspires the Panthers every day.
"He came up to me and started talking to me for a couple of minutes, just about his life and it was just so surprising how positive the kid was, never was he looking at all the tragedies and stuff he's going through but every time I talk to him, he's positive, just loving life," said Pittsford Senior Matt LaRocca.
The Teddi Bowl is Thursday at 7 p.m. at St. John Fisher College.