중증 장애를 가진 아들과 함께 철인 3종경기에 나선 뜨거운 부정(父情)이 인터넷을 강타하고 있다.
미국에서 제작된 다큐멘터리를 한국 한 네티즌이 번역,편집한 이 동영상은 키위닷컴, 싸-이월드 등 주요 UCC사이트에서 네티즌의 눈물샘을 자극하는 중이다.
동영상의 주인공은 태어날 때부터 뇌성마비를 앓아 팔다리는 물론 언어장애를 안고 있는 미국의 릭 호잇(39).
“달릴 때면 자신이 장애인이라는 사실을 잊게 된다”는 아들의 말에 따라 아버지 딕 호잇(65)은 아들의 휠체어를 끌며 마라톤을 시작하게 된다.
보스턴 마라톤에서 2시간50분의 기록으로 완주한 호잇 부자는 주위 사람들의 만류에도 불구하고 불가능한 도전인 철인 3종 경기에 나섰다.
아들이 탄 보트를 메달고 3.9km를 수영한 딕은 아들을 다시 사이클에 태우고 180km를 질주한다. 여기서 끝이 아니다. 아들의 휠체어를 밀고 49.195km를 다시 달려야 한다.
중증 장애인 릭 호잇은 사람들의 뜨거운 환호속에 철인의 칭호를 부여받고 아버지와 함께 뜨거운 눈물을 나눴다.
혼자 달리면 세계 최고 기록을 깰 것이라는 주위의 말에 아버지는 “아들이 없이는 달리지 않는다”는 한마디 말로 일축한다.
세상에서 가장 행복한 길을 달려온 아버지와 아들에게 장애는 단지 일상에서 극복해야 할 작은 산에 불과했다.
아들 릭 호잇은 아버지의 사랑에 부응하듯 "아버지는 나의 꿈을 실현시켜 주셨다. 아버지는 내 날개 아래를 지켜주는 바람이다"라고 고백했다.
네티즌은 "컴퓨터 앞에서 기립박수를 쳤다" "한참을 되돌려 보면서 눈물을 흘렸다"고 댓글을 통해 뜨거운 호응을 보내고 있다.
이들 부자에 대한 상세한 내용은 http://www.teamhoyt.com/index.html에서 볼 수 있다.
( http://www.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2007/06/14/2007061400901.html )
Yes You Can!
Team Hoyt is an inspirational story of a father, Dick Hoyt, and his son, Rick, who compete together in marathons and triathlons across the country.
Team Hoyt strives to help those who are physically disabled become active members of the community. Join us in spreading Team Hoyt's message, "Yes You Can!"
The Early Years
Rick was born in 1962 to Dick and Judy Hoyt. As a result of oxygen deprivation to Rick's brain at the time of his birth, Rick was diagnosed as a spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy. Dick and Judy were advised to institutionalize Rick because there was no chance of him recovering, and little hope for Rick to live a "normal" life. This was just the beginning of Dick and Judy's quest for Rick's inclusion in community, sports, education and one day, the workplace.
Dick and Judy soon realized that though Rick couldn't walk or speak; he was quite astute and his eyes would follow them around the room. They fought to integrate Rick into the public school system, pushing administrators to see beyond Rick's physical limitations. Dick and Judy would take Rick sledding and swimming, and even taught him the alphabet and basic words, like any other child. After providing concrete evidence of Rick's intellect and ability to learn like everyone else, Dick and Judy needed to find a way to help Rick communicate for himself.
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.
In 1975, at the age of 13, Rick was finally admitted into public school. After high school, Rick attended Boston University, and he graduated with a degree in Special Education in 1993. Dick retired in 1995 as a Lt. Colonel from the Air National Guard, after serving his country for 37 years.
The Beginning of Team Hoyt
In the spring of 1977, Rick told his father that he wanted to participate in a 5-mile benefit run for a Lacrosse player who had been paralyzed in an accident. Far from being a long-distance runner, Dick agreed to push Rick in his wheelchair and they finished all 5 miles, coming in next to last. That night, Rick told his father, "Dad, when I'm running, it feels like I'm not handicapped."
This realization was just the beginning of what would become over 1,000 races completed, including marathons, duathlons and triathlons (6 of them being Ironman competitions). Also adding to their list of achievements, Dick and Rick biked and ran across the U.S. in 1992, completing a full 3,735 miles in 45 days. More...
In a triathlon, Dick will pull Rick in a boat with a bungee cord attached to a vest around his waist and to the front of the boat for the swimming stage. For the biking stage, Rick will ride a special two-seater bicycle, and then Dick will push Rick in his custom made running chair (for the running stage).
Rick was once asked, if he could give his father one thing, what would it be? Rick responded, "The thing I'd most like is for my dad to sit in the chair and I would push him for once."
The 2009 Boston Marathon was officially Team Hoyt's 1000th race. Rick always says if it comes down to doing one race a year he would like it to be the Boston Marathon: his favorite race. Dick Hoyt hopes that he is able to push Rick in the Boston Marathon when he is 70 years old (2011)! Neither Dick or Rick are ready to retire yet.
( http://www.teamhoyt.com/about/index.html )