Iram Leon Proved He Could be The Best That He Could be in Life

By Randy Gardner

There were  so many things that I could write about this week  in the world of sports in St. Louis including the losses of Stephen Jackson and Danny Amendola, which are huge to the Rams franchise, along with Mizzou and Saint Louis University Basketball in the tournaments, to Cards baseball and their potential  pitching problems as they enter the season.

I want to take time though today to write about a real sports hero in this world. Not only a sports hero but a father hero in my book. This man and his story puts life into perspective at least for me and if it doesn’t make you stop and think, you are not human.

His name is Iram Leon and if you haven’t heard or read his story, look it up on the internet. In the meantime I will tell you about him. Iram is a 32-year-old father who was diagnosed with brain cancer and told that he might not make it to 40.

He was told that he could not drive or do any contact sports. However, he could run though. So he started running with his daughter in a stroller ahead of him. Iram tried to enter a full marathon but was denied because of his daughter in the stroller. Finally he was allowed to enter and he ended up winning the event.

What touched me most is that the family practices 911 drills at home because of his seizures and his daughter has seen the worst but being able to spend this time with his daughter in this way is time she will never forget. The end of the article goes on to say that he will never go to his death bed wishing he had spent more time with his daughter.

Unfortunately it takes a story like this to get our lives back into perspective, so many of us including me will say, I will toss the ball with you later, I’m busy or I will help you build those Legos later. Sometimes there might not be a later.  So many times our heroes and idols are athletes and actors and that’s alright to a degree but real heroes walk amongst us everyday, be a hero in your life. You control the degree as to which you are your own hero.

I just recently read a quote from Oprah Winfey that says, What you believe is what you become. I sat my kids down right after I read that and explained the meaning of this statement. You can apply it to every aspect in your life, sports are included in this. So many of us feel that we are not worthy of success or being the hero but I bet if you stopped and looked around and learned what others think of you including your family—you are the hero.

Make people around you look up to you in your actions and words. I know this is all pretty heavy for a sports column but life is made up of many different layers and sports comes to, like life, being the best  that you can be.



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