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Christian McCaffrey reunites with elderly man he helped rescue after hiking accident

As the Carolina Panthers get ready to host the Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday's Week 3 showdown will hold a special meaning for star running back Christian McCaffrey.

KJ Hiramoto

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- This weekend, Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey reunited with the elderly man he helped rescue after a horrific hiking accident back in March 2018.

Dan Smoker Sr. and his family flew to Charlotte Friday to meet with the Panthers second-year running back. After the Smoker family arrived in the Queen City, McCaffrey treated them to a shopping spree at Academy Sports + Outdoors.

Dan Smoker Sr. also got a chance to take the field. His son Dan Smoker Jr. shared a video on Twitter of his father walking through the Panthers' tunnel.

The following day, McCaffrey introduced the Colorado family to some of his teammates, including quarterback Cam Newton and defensive end Julius Peppers.

From the photos shared by the Panthers' social media pages, the family appears to be in great spirits. But Dan Smoker Sr. has come a long way since he suffered serious injuries after the hiking accident.