Iron Man With Heart of Gold

Hello Boomers,

I saw a newscast from Florida that made me smile. 

There was an Iron Man competition in Clearwater on Friday.  One of the triathletes was from Canada. 

Losing his sight to a degenerative disease, he refuses to let it sideline him as he continues to live his life to the fullest.  As impressive as his story was, it wasn’t what made me smile. 

What made me smile was the man who made this race possible for our Canadian athlete.  You see, a nearly blind man cannot swim, bike, and run a course of nearly 71 miles without someone helping him every step of the way.      

That someone on a sunny Friday in Clearwater, Florida was a very selfless individual.  He knew full well the challenge of such events as he had participated in them before. 

He had swam the seas until he thought his lungs might burst.   He had biked the miles and pushed through the pain.  He had finished the runs even though exhausted.      

He knew the thrill of competing in and of finishing such challenges.  He knew how good it felt as he had already laid claim to the Iron Man title.  

This man’s generous heart is what made me smile because on Friday he helped a nearly blind friend become an Iron Man too. 

He tethering himself to the Canadian to guide him through the sea.  He guided their tandem bike over the many miles.  He finished the run as he had begun, his arm touching the Canadian’s.  Sweaty arm against sweaty arm, he never lost touch, never faltered, never forgot his mission.   

With the help of this guide, the blind athlete finished the grueling event and is now an Iron Man too.  It is a remarkable feat and is something that he will remember for the rest of his life.  

But for me the real story is the man who swam, who biked, and who ran nearly 71 miles to help a blind man feel what he had already felt, achieve what he had already achieved, conquer what he had already conquered.   

On Friday in Clearwater, a very good man made it possible for a nearly blind Canadian to become an Iron Man too.  And that made me smile.  You can see the news video at http://tinyurl.com/394uhrj.

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