I have a special friend who has been a hero to me for years. For a little background, let me tell you that Stacy is now a 45 year old who was born with Spinal Bifida and Cerebral Palsy, and has been confined to a wheel chair for his whole life. Though his body is crippled, his mind and heart are better than a lot of us. He struggles to speak, but you can understand him. He uses a computer and an electric wheel chair, and I’m sure many other devices.
When Stacy was about 12 years old, he had a severe case of pneumonia, which can be fatal for someone in his shape. He was in the Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. One Sunday afternoon, I drove to Memphis to see him. My daughter, Allison, was about 6 years old at the time, but I decided that she should not go with me. When I arrived, I saw that he was connected to many tubes and wires and was under an oxygen tent struggling to breathe. His mother adjusted the tent so we could talk. He smiled at me, and the first words to come out of his mouth were “How is Allison?”
To this day I think about what an amazing, selfless person Stacy was that day. But, then again, he is that way every day, full of smiles and well wishes for others. That was just the day I found out how truly amazing he was. That was just the day that he became my hero.