This story is filed under ‘Traditional Values’ but a better category would simply be ‘Love’.
At first glance, Rick Van Beek appears a typical father to his thirteen year old daughter Madison. But Maddy is a little different. She has Cerebral Palsy and can’t walk or talk. Every father wants his child to be healthy, in the clip below, Van Beek shares how accepting his daughter’s imperfections also helped his own personal growth.
Madison loves to be outside. A few years ago an out of shape Van Beek saw his daughter participating in a race and was inspired to be the one taking her hand, pushing her stroller and carrying her when needed. He gave up smoking and began to get himself in better physical condition, eventually forming Team Maddy. Together they have now run over 70 races including half marathons.
The following story aired just before their last race in May. As you watch it listen to this dad getting choked up when talking about not himself, but how his daughter inspires others. It’s a good reminder how our children, though not born perfect, often have a profound influence on those around us, including strangers. Sometimes all it takes is a father’s love.