(KDVR) — Nine-year-old Presli Collins is still on Cloud 9 after spending a surprise weekend with Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow.
Collins suffers from Neurofibromatosis-1, an inherited tumor disorder.
After the Cartoon Network learned of her medical condition, Presli and her father were invited to the network’s ‘Hall of Game’ awards in Los Angeles.
“(It was) very, very, very exciting,” Presli told us as she opened a gift box from the Tim Tebow Foundation at her family’s Parker home. “(Tebow) was a thousand times nicer than you think he is.”
Presli’s dad took several photos of her with Tebow and other celebrities who attended the event. His daughter returned home with several souvenirs, including an autographed Tebow football.
“It says ‘To Presli Number 15, Tim Tebow, God bless. Go Broncos’,” she said, reading the inscription.
And Tebow’s parting words? “Thank you for being an amazing date,” Presli said with a wide smile.
From looking at her, you would hardly know that Presli has undergone complicated surgeries for her condition, which causes tumors under the skin, and in nerves from the brain and spinal cord.
“I think the hardest part is not knowing how it’ll manifest in her body,” said her mother Lisa Collins.
Lisa says they couldn’t believe it when Tebow’s “Wish 15″ foundation called last week to arrange Presli’s trip.
“She had just gone through a lot, and when we got the notice for this she was just completely shocked,” Lisa told us. “My husband last night said that the whole weekend he’s never seen her smile and be as happy as she was.”
Presli still has a long road to travel. Her family encourages people to support Tebow’s foundation, Children’s Hospital and the Children’s Tumor Foundation for their help.
“I can’t even express how grateful we are for the opportunity she’s had (and) the joy she’s had,” says Lisa.
Presli’s turns 10 on Tuesday.
If you want to learn more about Presli’s story, what she has been through, and the organizations who helped her and her family you can go to her Facebook page at:
(KDVR’s Dave Young Reporting)