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Meeting a hero
Victorville stuntman visits superhero-obsessed boy with cancer
VICTORVILLE • While a 4-year- old cancer patient's Christmas wish of meeting his favorite superhero has not yet come true, the boy has discovered a new group of heroes after a visit from a retired Hollywood stuntman from Victorville.
Victorville resident Al Cutillo, 73, said the highfive that Timo Davis gave him during his visit to Davis’ hospital room at Loma Linda University Medical Center made his entire week. Cutillo first heard about Timo’s yearlong battle with neuroblastoma and his Christmas wish to meet Tobey Maguire from a story published in the Daily Press.
“I knew I had to do something to help him out,” Cutillo said.
After putting in calls to McGuire and Ellen Degeneres’ agencies, Cutillo decided to rally the Stuntmen’s Association to get a signed shirt and hat for Timo. Cutillo is a member of the association and was a stuntman in Hollywood for more than 20 years before he retired.
“Stunt guys are the real heroes,” Cutillo explained. “They do all the work.”
While he was unsure if Timo would know what role stuntmen played in superhero movies, Cutillo said he hoped to bring a smile to the boy’s face. Many stuntmen were on vacation over the holiday season, but Cutillo was able to fill a shirt with signatures. On Saturday, he brought the shirt and a hat to Timo at the hospital.
Timo’s mom, Timmie Dinger, said Timo was quiet at first because he didn’t know Cutillo, but as soon as he saw the hat, he put it on his head with a smile.
“He’s such a great kid. He’s got a good attitude and a great spirit,” Cutillo said. “I loved being with the kid. After he said ‘high-five’ I knew we were going to be friends.”
Timo was diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma in December 2011 and has been battling it ever since. When his sister, Mina Ramos, found out he wanted to meet Spider-Man for Christmas, she used social media to rally the High Desert around the cause, creating a Twitter account, “@TobeyforTimo,” and reaching out to celebrities.
So far, Maguire has not responded, but Cutillo’s visit has given Timo something new to think about in the meantime.
“He didn’t know what a stuntman was before but he does now,” Dinger said. “He thinks their job is cooler.”
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