It is a challenge to do justice to this family’s story with words, but the Father-Son duo called Team Hoyt is too inspirational to be left out. Just before he was born, a complication leading to extended oxygen deprivation caused Rick Hoyt to become a quadriplegic with cerebral palsy. This debilitating and heartbreaking diagnosis, however, was met with love, determination and encouragement by Rick’s parents, Dick and Judy Hoyt.
Though he is unable to speak and will always be in a wheelchair, with his family’s support Rick was able to be integrated into school with the use of an interactive computer Rick used to spell. He graduated from Boston University with a degree in Special Education in 1993, and has continued on to achieve previously unimaginable goals.
An avid sports fan, in 1977 Rick told his dad he wanted to take part in a 5 mile run to benefit a school athlete who had been paralyzed in an accident. Up to the challenge, Dick Hoyt pushed Rick in his wheelchair all the way across the finish line, and began their incredible journey through athletic events around the country. “Dad, when I’m running, I feel like I’m not handicapped,” were the words that sparked an adventure leading this father and son team to participate in Boston marathons, Ironman triathlons and a 45 day biking and running trip across the United States.
Take a minute to watch this powerful and moving video that shows clips of some of the races they have participated in. Each is an incredible testament shown as the father carries, bikes or pushes his physically handicapped son so that he has the opportunity to feel like he is not handicapped. Be encouraged that while the challenge may be great, the encouragement of a supportive family or community can overcome!
At Van Products, we are here to offer that support and encouragement, and though circumstances may not seem ideal, we’re here to walk you through the process of making your life, whether wheelchair bound or as a caretaker, a bit easier. Life is a movie experience; let us help you make sure yours is! We hope to hear from you soon.