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Fathers Are Parents Too
LJ Community for Father's Rights
Strongest Dad In the World 
25th-Aug-2006 12:33 pm
Yoda with lightsaber
Direct from an email I received. This and many other stories should be enough to stop biased lawmakers, interest groups and lobbyists from pushing for unfair antagonistic laws against fathers that keep them from being parents.

TRUE: Male=Equally Viable Parent
FALSE: Male=violent abuser

> I try to be a good father. Give my kids mulligans. Work nights to
> for their text messaging. Take them to swimsuit shoots. But compared
> with Dick Hoyt, I suck.
> Eighty-five times he's pushed his disabled son, Rick, 26.2 miles in
> marathons. Eight times he's not only pushed him 26.2 miles in a
> wheelchair but also towed him 2.4 miles in a dinghy while swimming
> pedaled him 112 miles in a seat on the handlebars--all in the same
> day.
> Dick's also pulled him cross-country skiing, taken him on his back
> mountain climbing and once hauled him across the U.S. on a bike.
> taking your son bowling look a little lame, right?
> And what has Rick done for his father? Not much--except save his
> This love story began in Winchester, Mass., 43 years ago, when Rick
> was strangled by the umbilical cord during birth, leaving him
> brain-damaged and unable to control his limbs. ``He'll be a vegetable
> the rest of his life;'' Dick says doctors told him and his wife,
> when Rick was nine months old. ``Put him in an institution.''
> But the Hoyts weren't buying it. They noticed the way Rick's eyes
> followed them around the room. When Rick was 11 they took him to the
> engineering department at Tufts University and asked if there was
> anything to help the boy communicate. ``No way,'' Dick says he was
> told. ``There's nothing going on in his brain.''
> "Tell him a joke,'' Dick countered. They did. Rick laughed. Turns out
> a lot was going on in his brain.
> Rigged up with a computer that allowed him to control the cursor by
> touching a switch with the side of his head, Rick was finally able to
> communicate. First words? ``Go Bruins!'' And after a high school
> classmate was paralyzed in an accident and the school organized a
> charity run for him, Rick pecked out, ``Dad, I want to do that.''
> Yeah, right. How was Dick, a self-described ``porker'' who never ran
> more than a mile at a time, going to push his son five miles? Still,
> he tried. ``Then it was me who was handicapped,'' Dick says. ``I was
> sore for two weeks.''
> That day changed Rick's life. ``Dad,'' he typed, ``when we were
> running, it felt like I wasn't disabled anymore!''
> And that sentence changed Dick's life. He became obsessed with giving
> Rick that feeling as often as he could. He got into such hard-belly
> shape that he and Rick were ready to try the 1979 Boston Marathon.
> ``No way,'' Dick was told by a race official. The Hoyts weren't quite
> a single runner, and they weren't quite a wheelchair competitor. For
> few years Dick and Rick just joined the massive field and ran anyway,
> then they found a way to get into the race officially: In 1983 they
> ran another marathon so fast they made the qualifying time for Boston
> the following year.
> Then somebody said, ``Hey, Dick, why not a triathlon?''
> How's a guy who never learned to swim and hadn't ridden a bike since
> he was six going to haul his 110-pound kid through a triathlon?
> Dick tried.
> Now they've done 212 triathlons, including four grueling 15-hour
> Ironmans in Hawaii. It must be a buzzkill to be a 25-year-old stud
> getting passed by an old guy towing a grown man in a dinghy, don't
> think?
> Hey, Dick, why not see how you'd do on your own? ``No way,'' he says.
> Dick does it purely for ``the awesome feeling'' he gets seeing Rick
> with a cantaloupe smile as they run, swim and ride together.
> This year, at ages 65 and 43, Dick and Rick finished their 24th
> Marathon, in 5,083rd place out of more than 20,000 starters. Their
> best time'? Two hours, 40 minutes in 1992--only 35 minutes off the
> world record, which, in case you don't keep track of these things,
> happens to be held by a guy who was not pushing another man in a
> wheelchair at the time.
> ``No question about it,'' Rick types. ``My dad is the Father of the
> Century.''
> And Dick got something else out of all this too. Two years ago he had
> a mild heart attack during a race. Doctors found that one of his
> arteries was
> 95% clogged. ``If you hadn't been in such great shape,'' one doctor
> told him, ``you probably would've died 15 years ago.''
> So, in a way, Dick and Rick saved each other's life.
> Rick, who has his own apartment (he gets home care) and works in
> Boston, and Dick, retired from the military and living in Holland,
> Mass., always find ways to be together. They give speeches around the
> country and compete in some backbreaking race every weekend,
> including this Father's Day.
> That night, Rick will buy his dad dinner, but the thing he really
> wants to give him is a gift he can never buy.
> ``The thing I'd most like,'' Rick types, ``is that my dad would sit
> the chair and I would push him once.''
> Here's the video....



25th-Aug-2006 08:13 pm (UTC)
Awesome story. I hope I can do half as well by my boy. Thanks!
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