In the past couple of weeks, a few individuals and organizations have demonstrated how sports can serve as an emotionally uplifting tool.
On Tuesday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers offered Eric LeGrand an NFL contract. Greg Schiano, the new coach of the Bucs, was previously the coach at Rutgers University, where LeGrand was a standout linebacker before being paralyzed in a 2010 game against Army.
While the free agent contract offered to LeGrand was ceremonial and didn’t include a monetary amount, no amount of money could have substituted for the joy LeGrand experienced when he received the contract offer from his former collegiate coach.
“I always wanted to go to the NFL,” LeGrand said. “It may not be the circumstances that I wanted, but I’m there. I had no idea, no idea, this was going to happen. Honestly, it’s amazing. It is. It really is.”
Baseball fans in Louisville were inspired by in late April by Stephanie Decker. She received national attention when the Indiana resident shielded her two children from their collapsing house during a tornado, saving them but losing her legs.
The University of Louisville invited Decker to throw out the first pitch in a game against the University of Kentucky.
“Nothing’s going to top this,” Decker told WLKY. “Really, this was a dream for my kids and myself.”
Just this week, Decker took her first steps exactly two months after she was injured by the tornado. She also took those steps 10 months earlier than doctors initially expected.