You know, if there was such an award for the best father in the world, the American Dick Hoyt would definitely receive it.
In 1962, a son was born to the Hoyt family, they named him Rick. But unfortunately, he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. This news literally killed his parents … After all, at that time no one was particularly struggling with this disease, and the child had only one way – to a special institution for people in a vegetative state, colloquially – “vegetables” …
Rick’s limbs didn’t work, he could only move his head a little. When the boy got older, Judy’s mother hung pieces of paper around the house with the inscriptions “wardrobe”, “door”, and “wall” and began to teach Rick the alphabet. And in 1974, students from Tufts University of Massachusetts invented a special communication device for Rick. This device, instead of Rick, spoke the words that the guy typed with his head on a special console with a keyboard. To pay for this device, the father of the family had to work several jobs.
In 1977, in his computer voice, Rick told his father that he wanted to participate in a charity run in honor of a paralyzed boy. Dick, who had never run, agreed because he loved his son so much that he was willing to do anything to keep him happy.
Pushing in front of him, a bulky and clumsy chair with his son, Dick ran 8.46 kilometers. It was very hard for him, he rubbed his legs terribly, and all his muscles ached, but they came to the finish line, the penultimate, and the audience applauded them as winners. Returning home, the son told his father: “Dad, when I run, I feel that I am no longer disabled. ” Now Dick knew what to do.
And since then, their lives have changed dramatically. They began to build their sports career. Father and son soon covered 10 and 22.5 and 42 kilometers. But they didn’t stop there. The brave “Team Hoyt” took part in the triathlon.
Dick was not only running, but he was also cycling and swimming with his son. The father tied himself with a rope, and she pulled the boat with her son.
And then there were serious competitions, practically for survival – Ironman. Here you first need to swim 3.86 kilometers, then ride a bike for 180.25 kilometers, and run 42.195 kilometers. This marathon “Team Hoyt” overcame as many as six times!
In 2014, the team completed its sports career. They have more than one and a half thousand races and triathlon competitions. The family has been inducted into the Ironman Hall of Fame, and a memorial has been erected for them in Boston.
Rick later earned a degree in special education. He even worked at Boston College, where he worked in a computer lab on designs for devices that would allow people with disabilities to communicate and perform tasks.
“ If I had not been offered to live my life differently, I would have refused without hesitation. I don’t regret for a second that I spent all this time with my son,” said Dick Hoyt. After all, he did everything to make his son smile and be happy.