Freeman Cebu Sports

Boston icon Rick Hoyt dies

SPORTS EYE - Raffy Uytiepo - The Freeman

Rick Hoyt who was born with cerebral palsy and could not use his arms or legs, finished the Boston Marathon 36 times, using his wheelchair with his father Dick, pushing the chair over 1,000 races. Hoyt who started racing in 1977, died last week of complications with his respiratory system at aged 61.  Rick told his farther he waited to be part of a 1.6 km benefit race for a lacrosse player who had been paralized in an accident.  That was the first time the duo participated in a running event.  The pair’s first Boston Marathon was in 1980 and last together in 2014.  Dick died in 2013 at aged 80.  Rick could not talk and when he was 12, used his hands and buttons on his chair to type sentences.  He also participated in six Ironman triathlons.  Dick used a rope attached to his body to pull Rick sitting in his boat.  He carried him in a special seat in the front of a bicycle and pushed him in a special wheelchair as they run.  The Hoyts through 2016 has competed in 1,130 races including 72 marathons and 6 triathlons.  In 2013, the Hoyts had about a mile to go when two bombs exploded at the finish line.  They were stopped by officials.  In 2014, the Hoyts announced that it would be their last race together, so from 2015 to 2019, Rick was pushed in the Boston Marathon by dentist Bryan Lyons, who  died in 2020 aged  50.  The Hoyts will always be remembered as a Boston Marathon icon and for personifying the “yes you can”, mentally that defined Team Hoyt.  In 2013, a statue of the Hoyts was erected bear the start of the Boston Marathon.  One of my treasured memorabilia, is a Team Hoyt t-shirt given by a friend from Boston.

Celtic pride

Even before the 2023 NBA season started, I wrote that the Boston Celtics will be champions.  But  during the current  series with  the Miami Heat, to determine  the opponent of the Denver Nuggets, i was about to become a fake prophet or fortune teller.  The Celtics lost three in a row including two in their homecourt.  But I was still confident the Celtics will bounce back and force a Game7.  Of course, I was looking at the NBA history that says no team has won a championship after trailing 0-3.  Denver swept the  Los Angeles Lakers to emerged champion in the Western Conference and is waiting  for the winner of the Boston-Miami series.  Just when I was to give up on my team in Game 6, Derrick White beat the clock with time expiring to lift Boston to a 104-103 victory that stunned the Heat.  When this column comes out, we will know if Boston will be the first team to re-write NBA history, but it looks like my prediction will come true with Boston claiming its 18th championship  Celtic pride indeed. — (FREEMAN)


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