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Sometimes what you need…

Sometimes what you need is for someone who loves you to show up. To hold you up when all you want to do is crash. Allowing you to finish what you started, even when the “best” thing would be for you to stop.

There are few story’s that can really capture the power of love and the grit of courageous determination. The Derek Redmond story is one of them.

Many are familiar with this almost mythical tale. But for those who are not it goes like this.

Sometimes what you need is for someone who loves you to show up. To hold you up when all you want to do is crash.

Derek Redmond was an olympic sprinter from Great Britain. In 1988 his hopes of olympic glory were dashed due to an injury to his achilles tendon. For the next four year he trained for another opportunity to compete on the olympic stage. In that time he also had several surgeries due to injury.

When the 1992 Olympics came around, Derek did well enough to qualify for the olympic team. In the semi-final of the 400 meter sprint, he looked like he would do well enough to go on to the finals. But with about half of the distance left to finish, Derek’s hamstring tore, taking him to the ground.

In what can only be described as shear determination, he got up and tried to hobble his way to the finish line. With each step the pain in his leg increased. With each step his will to finish growing weaker.

Then, from out of stands, an older man is seen coming onto the track. Ignoring security, pushing them aside, the man made his way to Redmond.

That man was Derek Redmond’s father, Jim.

While fighting back tears and enduring the pain of a torn muscle Derek and his father made their way to the finish line.

All those years of training and whatever aspirations of olympic glory there may have been, they ended that day. On that track.

But a different story was written. One that inspired countless millions since that fateful day and became a living testimony to the power of love.

We all want to believe that we can do it on our own. That we can make it in this world without the help of others.

But every now and then, when the world in which we live sends us what feel like insurmountable obstacles, someone steps in and gives us the helping hand we need to finish.

The story of Derek Redmond is great, not because he finished first and won the gold.

The story of Derek Redmond is great because he endured to the end of the race. Fighting back tears, suffering through pain, and with a little help from his dad.

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