89ºF

Find out how Robert Downey Jr. turns Central Florida boy into 'Iron Man'

Robert Downey Jr. meets with Alex Pring, 7, to give him 'Iron Man' arm

Robert Downey Jr. with Alex Pring.
Robert Downey Jr. with Alex Pring.

ATLANTA – A Central Florida boy received a newer and cooler arm, delivered by Iron Man himself.

[FULL VIDEO: Central Florida boy meets Iron Man ]

Robert Downey Jr., who stars in "Iron Man" as Tony Stark, posted a two-minute video on Twitter of his meeting with 7-year-old Alex Pring, of Groveland, on Thursday. (View the video by clicking the link above)

"When I flew to Georgia, I had to stay in a hotel for about two days," said first-grader Alex Pring, who didn't know much, except that he was getting a new 3D-printed arm.

photo

The clip starts with Alex and Albert Manero, a UCF aerospace engineering student, walking down a hallway on Saturday in Atlanta. Manero and his UCF group, Limbitless Solutions, produces 3-D printed bionic arms for children and designed Alex's first bionic arm in 2014.

Downey greets Alex and tells him he is another bionic expert. He then presents Alex with a matching Iron Man arm.

"We were freaking out, because obviously, it's Robert Downey Jr. -- that's awesome," said Alex's mother, Alyson Pring.

Alex was born with a partially developed arm, and his mother wanted to see if she could make a hand for him using a 3D printer. But when it got too complicated, she turned to Manero for help. Six weeks later, Manero and his group developed a robotic arm for Alex using the 3D printer.

The family said the prosthetic would have cost thousands of dollars and it wasn't covered by insurance. However, it only cost Manero and his group $350 to make, but they gave it to Alex for free.

"I think he was starting to be afraid to be around new people," said Alyson Pring.

Alex said he can't wait to go to school with his new Iron Man gear that was specially delivered by Iron Man himself.

"I would like to say thank you to UCF, because they made my life so much easier," said Pring.

Alex teamed back up with Manero last month in an attempt to break the world record for the longest high-five chain as part of a sponsorship with Microsoft OneNote and Limbitless Solutions.

Groveland is located 30 miles outside of Orlando. Manero says the visit was top secret and that the video was shot in Atlanta on Saturday.