February 9, 2013
ASD, Autism, Autism Fiction, Autism Spectrum, Autism Writing, Children, Dick Hoyt, Disability, Disabled Child, Fatherhood, Fireflies, Inspiration, Kindling, Parenthood, Rick Hoyt, Team Hoyt
(Pic Source: luxirare.com)
The inspirational tale of Team Hoyt came past me again recently. For those disinclined to click the link, it shares the incredible story of father, Dick, disabled son, Rick, and the thousand plus marathons / triathlons they have performed as one, dad towing and wheeling and pushing his paralyzed boy all the way. Their thirty-five year odyssey is replete with details to make the heart swell and the eyes tear up, but this one provided particular pause for me:
With $5,000 in 1972 and a skilled group of engineers at Tufts University, an interactive computer was built for Rick. This computer consisted of a cursor being used to highlight every letter of the alphabet. Once the letter Rick wanted was highlighted, he was able to select it by just a simple tap with his head against a head piece attached to his wheelchair. When the computer was originally first brought home, Rick surprised everyone with his first words. Instead of saying, “Hi, Mom,” or “Hi, Dad,” Rick’s first “spoken” words were: “Go, Bruins!” The Boston Bruins were in the Stanley Cup finals that season. It was clear from that moment on, that Rick loved sports and followed the game just like anyone else.
That pivotal moment of communication breakthrough must have been like a glorious dawn; the perennial night finally receding as the sun climbs over the horizon, never to set again on the Hoyt family. I can only imagine how good it felt to see that light.
I can only imagine.