John Cena Meets Teen Superfan With Down Syndrome Who Fled Ukraine – The Hollywood Reporter

John Cena made time during a recent European trip to connect with a fan who fled Ukraine with his mom.

According to a video posted to the WWE’s YouTube channel, the star got word that Misha Rohozhyn, a non-verbal 19-year-old with Down syndrome, escaped the war-embattled nation with his mother, Liana Rohozhyn, after their home in Mariupol was destroyed, and that Liana encouraged Misha throughout the journey by telling him they were on their way to see his hero, Cena. On June 5, Cena turned Liana’s fantasy into reality when he traveled to a residence outside Amsterdam where the refugees had been staying.

“When I read about Misha’s story, it reached out to me — not just Misha’s story, but the story of Misha’s mom as well,” Cena explained in the video. “Having three days off from work right at the time when I read this story, and being an hour away by air, it turned immediately into, ‘We’re going.’”

He continued, “And that means spending an afternoon building blocks and eating cake. That’s a special afternoon when it comes to the new friends I was able to meet.”

The footage shows Cena greeting Misha with a handshake and hug before affectionally telling the teen, “I’ve come a long way to see you. I’ve heard many things about you.”

Cena arrived adorned in his branded shirt and hat emblazoned with his “Never Give Up” catchphrase, and he gifted the items to Misha, who was later wearing them. He also gave Misha a WWE Championship belt.

At the end of the visit, Liana, clearly touched, told Cena through a translator, “John, thank you. You have a big heart.”

After the trip, the star tweeted, “What a wonderful way to spend a Saturday. Misha and his mother, Liana, define #NeverGiveUp.”

Prior to the visit, the Wall Street Journal reported in May that Misha had been crying earlier that month in his room in Amsterdam because Cena had yet to arrive. Liana told the publication at the time, “I tell him, ‘We’re not finished with our journey, but we need to stop here and save up a little for a ticket to America, to find him there.’”

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