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Terminally ill 7-year-old gets his Halloween wish granted and fights off the walking dead.

His mission: Live a day as a hero in the middle of a zombie attack.

Terminally ill 7-year-old gets his Halloween wish granted and fights off the walking dead.

Civilization has collapsed. Supplies are scarce. Oh yeah, and there are a bunch of undead, flesh-eating creatures roaming around every corner — and they're coming after you.

The zombie apocalypse has become a popular fantasy these days.


That's thanks in no small part to the success of "The Walking Dead," which has been, ahem, killing it for years, and its spinoff series, "Fear the Walking Dead." But most of us won't have a chance to put our encyclopedic knowledge of the undead to practical use.

Then again, most of us aren't Spencer Holt.

Somebody call a hero? Photo by Pasco Sheriff's Office, used with permission.



The 7-year-old boy from Pasco County, Florida, got to do what many of us secretly wish we could try: living a day as a hero in the middle of a zombie attack.

Spencer is battling a terminal mitochondrial disease that has no known cure. With doctors unable to establish any firm timeline of what lies in store for him, he and his family are simply taking life one step at a time, hoping that tomorrow brings better news than the day before.

Thanks to a few kindhearted deputies, he received exactly that last week in the form of a day spent living out his fantasy as a real-life Rick Grimes.

Watcha gonna do when he comes for you? Photo by Pasco Sheriff's Office, used with permission.

After receiving a call from Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco inviting him down to the station, Spencer — a lover of all things law enforcement and zombie-related — was whisked away to the sheriff's office with a full motorcade escort in tow.

Before he could even begin to make heads or tails of the situation, he was informed that an army of zombies (played by local high school drama students) had infiltrated the facility.

Insert “Me before my morning coffee" joke here. Photo by Pasco Sheriff's Office, used with permission.

"We're overrun, buddy. We need your help. We need a team leader out there," Nocco told the boy as he adorned him with an official badge. "This is going to be an important day."

With a NERF dart gun in his hand and a troop of SWAT members and K-9 units providing backup, Spencer proceeded to dispatch any and every zombie threat facing the jail with sniper-like precision.

When all was said and done, Spencer was treated to two more surprises.

The first: a “Thriller"-inspired victory dance from several on-duty officers (a reference that I'm pretty confident was a little before his time).

GIF via WFLA News Channel 8.

The second: a minivan, donated to Spencer's family by a local roofing company to help transport him around.

Spencer's mother, Cher, was overwhelmed by the generous gestures. "This is what I treasure, the good days," she said. “Make the most memories of every day because no one is promised tomorrow."

Watch the action here, courtesy of Fox 13 News:

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Good thing my family wasn't looking over my shoulder while I was on my phone or my secret would have been ruined.

I'm certainly not alone in feeling like online ads can read your mind.

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True
Firefox

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Within just a few hours of finding out the news, I was being bombarded with ads for baby gear, baby clothes and diapers on Facebook, Instagram and pretty much any other site I visited — be it my phone or on my computer.

Good thing my family wasn't looking over my shoulder while I was on my phone or my secret would have been ruined.

I'm certainly not alone in feeling like online ads can read your mind.

When I started asking around, it seemed like everyone had their own similar story: Brian Kelleher told me that when he and his wife met, they started getting ads for wedding rings and bridal shops within just a few weeks. Tech blogger Snezhina Piskov told me that she started getting ads for pocket projectors after discussing them in Messenger with her colleagues. Meanwhile Lauren Foley, a writer, told me she started getting ads for Happy Socks after seeing one of their shops when she got off the bus one day.

When online advertising seems to know us this well, it begs the question: are our phones listening to us?

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Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

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