Watch This Mom Compete on 'American Ninja Warrior' in Honor of Her Late Son

American Ninja Warrior/YouTube
It's always incredibly inspiring to watch everyday people from all walks of life giving it their all on American Ninja Warrior, but Sarah Poulin's reason for competing on the show was even more inspiring than most. That's because when the 32-year-old mom took on the famed course, she was doing it in honor of her late son Jacob, who passed away at the age of 5 from a brain tumor -- and was a huge fan of the series.


In a clip from Monday night's episode, Poulin tells the heartbreaking story of how doctors discovered Jacob's rare form of brain cancer after he came home sick from school one day.

"He never really caught a break after that," said Poulin, who also has two young daughters.

"No parent wants their kid to ever be in pain. There's absolutely nothing worse."

Jacob tragically passed away a year later, on October 1, 2016. But he spent his short life doing the things he loved -- one of which was watching American Ninja Warrior.

"Jacob was hooked from the moment he started watching," Poulin said.

"He had been a monkey bar phenom since he was 3, but this opened his world up to obstacle courses."

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It broke Poulin's heart that Jacob wasn't going to be able to grow up and compete on the show himself someday, so she made a bold and brave decision: To compete in his place.

"I decided that he loved American Ninja Warrior so much but would never be able to get to do it," she said. "So I would do it for him. I decided that nothing was gonna stop me."

Such a beautiful and moving tribute. And to see the look of determination on Poulin's face as she trains and competes (with Jacob's picture in a heart locket around her neck) is so incredibly moving:

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While Poulin was thrown off course by the Rolling Log, she's still a winner by anybody's standards, and there's no doubt Jacob would be so proud of his amazing mom. It's clear that the gorgeous little boy's memory will live on forever, inspiring his family, friends, and everyone who hears his story to be the strongest, fiercest warriors they can be! And his mother is already planning on trying again:

"No, I didn't hit a buzzer," she told NBC. "Yes, I will hit one next year."

We'll be cheering her on!

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