Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Team Hoyt: Am I the last person on the planet to hear about them?!

Tonight, I sat next to a neighbor, Barnes, on the train home from work, and he mentioned Team Hoyt, a father and son from Massachusetts. "My friend is doing her first triathlon, and someone told her that anytime she hit a wall she should check out videos about those two," he said. "They're amazing." I've been lying on our bed watching the YouTube videos since I put the kids to bed.

Rick Hoyt has spastic quad cerebral palsy. Three decades ago, when he was a teen, he told his dad, Dick, that he wanted to participate in a charity run for a kid paralyzed in a lacrosse game. They did the run together, Dick pushing his son in a wheelchair. One thousand-plus races later, these two are still running—marathons, duathlons, triathlons. Rick is 47; Dick is going to be 70 next year.

"Show Dave the videos!" Barnes said, laughing. "He needs to get going!" Barnes has the most dry sense of humor and let me just say, I appreciate people who can joke like this instead of tap-dancing around the fact that Max has cp.

Here's a Today Show segment about The Hoyts:

Anyone with a pulse would get worked up watching this. But when you have a kid with cp, you could pretty much bawl all over your bedspread, which I did. Especially when the interviewer read a fan e-mail out loud and said to Dick, "You're more than a father, you're a hero to so many," and Rick turned his head and smiled at his father so adoringly (minute 5:25).

Now, of course, I'm feeling like I need to do more, more, more for Max.

But I'm going to leave the triathlons to him.


  1. Just talking about Team Hoyt this evening!

    I had what was basically an emotional breakdown in church not long after Charlie was born when they played a video clip on the Hoyts. So Inspiring.

  2. I can't watch those videos. We had a gut wrenching conversation in a care conference in the PICU when Max was very sick, trying to decide next steps.

    When asked what we realistically expected out of Max in life, my husband said with all the strength in the world, we want him to run marathons. About our son who can not walk...nor talk...nor sit up on his own. And so, when I read about the Hoyt's or watch the videos, I just lose it. Beyond inspirational.

  3. Amazing that you posted this tonight. I have been thinking about the Hoyt duo all night! (for many reasons that I should get into one day haha) They are amazing.

    Trust me on this one thing...Max will tell you just what he wants to do, when he wants to do it, and you will be able to be right beside him! Also, no matter what that "thing" is he decides on, I know for sure it will surprise and inspire you and all of us! :)

  4. This video is very powerful! About a month ago I came home from work and there was a package waiting for me. It was an ex coworker who i hadn't kept in touch with for over ten years but through the grapevine (now referred to as facebook)he had heard about Hailey. In the package was an autographed copy of the book about the Hoyt's life with a small note attached saying something like " i thought you would enjoy this" It was an awful nice thing for him to do, just to let someone know that you are thinkimg about them really matters.

  5. I remember hearing about these 2 years ago. What an inspiring video. Thanks for posting.

  6. We profiled them on Support for Special Needs.com and interview Dick (dad) and he is very quiet but we loved his insight into helping his transition into adulthood...he was our first Future Glimpse profile! They are both amazing!

  7. I had heard of Team Hoyt before, but never watched any of the videos. Oh my word! I bawled my eyes out watching that. Seriously, I think I was doing the ugly cry! What an inspiration they are! AMAZING!

  8. He's a lucky kid, to have a dad like that. And dad is lucky, too. With family--the people who raised you, that you grew up with, who know your strengths and faults and put up with you anyway--you can do anything. Without them, you lose so much. And of course, it's all about the love!

    Beautiful clip.

  9. You aren't the last person to hear about them. But I'm surprised you haven't heard about them before (hense the reason why I never mentioned them).

  10. I have the post ready to go for tomorrow. Life got nuts today and didn't get it out. Stop by tomorrow to see your award! I wanted everyone to have a whole day to enjoy it!!

    Thanks for blogging!!


  11. My sister just ran her first half marathon this weekend. She learned about Team Hoyt there. You can actually join the team and run to contribute to their activities. Now she wants to run with my son. I think he would absolutely love it!

  12. I cry every time I watch that video
    They are SO inspiring

    By the way you inspired me to start a blog


    Are you on facebook at all?

    See you at Starlight

  13. I bawled my eyes out too, I think it was right after I joined the cp moms group when Sebastian had recently been diagnosed. There are so many inspiring stories out there. I just posted a story on fb about a man with cp climbing a mountain! Awesomeness.


Thanks for sharing!

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