I will take a gamble and say that Oakville’s Josh Cassidy and Cornwall’s Dr. Paul Poirier probably have not met.
If they have, fine. If they do in the coming weeks and/or months, the conversation would likely be a wonderful lesson in life for most people.
Their powerful stories – shared with our audience on Sunday Morning show – hit a nerve or two with lots of people. I know, because of the response from many who heard the program. Then, called or e-mailed me. Others chatted about it via Twitter and Facebook. I would think many more talked about it with family and friends.
Cassidy is the very talented wheelchair athlete who not only won his first Boston Marathon one week ago, but the 27-year old did it in a record time making him the fastest person to ever compete a marathon in the world.
On Sunday, his second marathon in a week, he finished 9th in London, England – where he’ll be later this summer for the Paralympic Games. Not long after his race, we had an exclusive interview with him on Sportsnet 590 THE FAN.
We started out talking about him, the race in England and how he was diagnosed with cancer in the spine many years ago. But, he then focussed on what’s been on his mind for days: a five year old female struggling with cancer.
You could tell in his voice that if he could make magic to help this girl, he would. While he didn’t beg for financial support for her, he could have used the opportunity. I did remind him to tell us about a website where people might wish to help with a financial donation.
Her determination to win a battle with the horrible disease meant a great deal more to Cassidy than his personal challenges – including twice a day, six-day-a-week training. That was quite clear.
As for Poirier, a 46-year old chiropractor who has battled brain cancer for 16 years and gone through several operations. Wow.
A husband, father and owner of a succesful practice in Eastern Ontario, the Carleton University grad is making the best of his life – and, as a biker in his spare time, raises money to educate people about brain tumours and how to defend against them.
He’s a strong fan of Bikers Against Brain Cancer. You can read more on the web.
But Poirier had more to share.
He’s determined to work hard at bodybuilding. Not necessarily to win the Masters title in the “Mr. Ottawa” competition in November, but to show people that he is not slowing down and has every intention of living life to its fullest.
Athletes and coaches need to realize that for many, there’s more to life than just personal gratification and winning medals. If you missed the interview, sign up to my Podcast and listen to Josh Cassidy at http://www.fan590.com/media.jsp?content=20120422_150706_7580 and Dr. Paul Poirier at http://www.fan590.com/ondemand/media.jsp?content=20120422_145458_5132