Friday, February 15, 2008

Extreme Inspiration

We spend a lot of time on this site skewering athletes, coaches and their hangers-on for doing dumb things on- and off the court. We always get a big laugh out of it, and we hope you do to.

But as the sober voice of reason here at HHR, I felt it appropriate to take a break from the sarcasm – albeit, a short one – to draw some very well deserved attention to a person in the world of sports who continues to do all the right things and serves as an inspiration to many.

By now, many people have heard the story of Patrick Henry Hughes, a student at the University of Louisville and a member of the Cardinal marching band. Usually we wouldn’t spend too much time lauding the efforts of band members, but we definitely take a notable exception in Hughes’ case.

You see, Hughes is blind and confined to a wheelchair. Yet with the help of his father - who is also named Patrick - Hughes has been a full participant in the band, playing in the Cards’ halftime shows. It’s a truly remarkable story that has attracted media attention across the country.

Late last year, ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition came to Louisville and refitted the Hughes’ modest home to be completely wheelchair accessible. And while they were at it, they managed to add some other very nice cosmetic touches to the house, which you can see here.

Listening to Patrick speak, he would be the first to say that he doesn’t want or deserve all of the attention he has received over the past year. Yet in a sports media cycle dominated by headlines of athletes who cheat, selfish trade demands, sexual harassment suits, criminal arrests and the like, I - along with many others - continue to find his story inspiring.

I wouldn’t bring all of this up again but to mention that Patrick will be on Extreme Makeover again this weekend when the show airs Sunday at 8 p.m. Eastern. If you haven’t had the opportunity to hear his story, I strongly encourage you to watch the show this weekend.

Also, a special thanks to the Louisville Courier-Journal for their continuing focus on Patrick and the Hughes family. If you don’t get a chance to watch the show Sunday, I encourage you to read columnist Tom Dorsey piece in today’s edition of the C-J.


DCScrap said...

fuck his blind, no walking ass... where's my story?

Fat Willard said...


You playing the 'skin flute' with your eyes closed is not the same...