EL CAJON, Calif. -- Three of Hollywood's biggest stars were in El Cajon to pull off the surprise of a lifetime for a teen battling leukemia.
On Monday morning, 18-year-old Ryan Wilcox, a student at Grossmont High, opened his door to find Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Evans. They flew in to Gillespie Field and showed up at Ryan’s home.
“I had no words,” Wilcox told 10News.
Wilcox is a huge fan of the Avengers. He was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor at the age of three. Doctor’s said he wasn’t going to make it past the age of five. But at the age of seven years old, his tumor was removed.
“Ryan has been a fighter his whole life,” said Amy Wilcox, Ryan's mother.
After nine years, his cancer was back. Last, year, he was diagnosed with a rare form of Leukemia.
Paltrow heard about Ryan's story through the long tentacles of social media. She contacted his family and set up the surprise visit at the family's El Cajon home. Then she brought along a couple of her celebrity superhero friends.
Ryan identifies with Captain America.
“He never gives up…always high spirited.”
“With my family by my side, that's how I got through it. And my friends praying for me.”
The movie stars spent about an hour with the family.
“It was so funny, they came and they sat down on the ground,” Amy Wilcox said. “It was just great, it almost like they were our friends.”
Friends with superpowers for Ryan's soul.
Earlier this month, Evans sent Wilcox a special message that was played during a surprise assembly at Grossmont High.