Meet Beau Smith, Jimmie Johnson’s friend and biggest fan I NASCAR RACEDAY

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The incredible story of Beau Smith, Jimmie Johnson's biggest fan, and honorary member of the No. 48 team.

[MUSIC PLAYING] TERRY SMITH: Beau definitely likes Jimmy from the get-go, from watching the races. When Beau was little, he was sick and really was kind of confined, and that was like an outlet for him.

MAUREEN SMITH: Beau has been sick since birth. They think that it's possibly a connective tissue disorder. So he is always on oxygen. He doesn't eat by mouth. He has osteoporosis, diabetes, a bleeding disorder. We were told one day-- it was the worst day-- that he probably wasn't going to make it.

- He could always complain if that's what he wanted to do, but he chooses not to. He always wants to know the next fun thing he's going to do from the minute he wakes up till the minute he goes to bed.

MAUREEN SMITH: I think having a chronic illness is very isolating. The timing of meeting Jimmy Johnson at the age that we did was incredible.

- I knew I was going to meet Beau. And then to see him with his 48 gear, and then he just charged me and threw this massive hug on me. That was a very special moment, and it's been so much fun to have Beau and his family to the races.

And Beau has his team shirt. The guys consider him one of the crew members. The interaction that they all have with him is incredible.

- The impact that he has had on the team is amazing. The guys want to interact with him. They enjoy having him around.

He helps push the car through technical inspection. He tinkers around on the starting grid with some of our guys. He is a legit part of the 48 team when he's around.

JIMMIE JOHNSON: He brings a ton of motivation, and he always reminds me that he wants to go Victory Lane. So that makes it a lot of fun.

JIMMIE JOHNSON: As a father, you know, you just want great experiences for your kids and quality moments for them to experience. And I'm sure, you know, life's been very challenging for Beau. And to look at his parents and to see the smile they have on their faces, that really kind of completes the whole thing for me. And it's been an amazing experience to have.

- Before we even met Jimmy and the team, he helped get us through some really difficult times. When Beau first started watching NASCAR, he couldn't even move his head on his own. Then as things evolved, it really has been a beacon for Beau to look forward to and for him to be part of something, and it's something so spectacular.

- I'm so grateful for the team because they've given Beau so much that we couldn't give him.

- Beau, do you have a minute?

MAN: I think Jimmie wants to talk to you.

- I found something. I didn't know if you maybe wanted it?

- Oh! Thank you.

- My goodness.

JIMMIE JOHNSON: This turns into a job at some point. Yes, it's the coolest job in the world, but it's easy to fall into that rhythm of it being work. And to meet someone like Beau and his family, to stop, and put it all in perspective that it does really impact someone's life on a much deeper level makes it all that more special.