Sports aren’t for the faint of heart. Just ask Broncos head coach John Fox, who underwent a successful aortic valve replacement Monday. Ask Gary Kubiak, head coach of the Texans, who suffered a transient ischemic attack at halftime of Sunday’s game.
Wins, losses, touchdowns, and interceptions pile up in our heads and in the stats books, but rarely do we walk or talk about sports as they relate to life or death because in the grand scheme of things, sports reside on the back burner at least for those of us watching. They sit behind health, family, friends, and faith.
What about for those playing/participating or coaching though? For a lot of those involved, leaving everything out on the field/court/course, and dying doing something that they love is ideal when the time comes.
Take for example 86-year-old Joy Johnson, who was the oldest female to run in Sunday’s ING NYC Marathon. She fell at mile 20 and hit her head. She was able to complete the race, but died the following day due to complications of trauma to the brain.
“She said: If I can die running I’ll die happy,” her younger sister said via the New York Post.
What about Hank “The Bank” Gathers, who played for Loyola Marymount University and collapsed on the court and died in 1990? He was obviously far too young to go, but died doing what he loved.
As we enter the second half of the football season, let’s remember that the product that’s put out on the field is secondary in the grand scheme of things.
Get well, John Fox. Get well, Gary Kubiak.