What is this salty discharge leaking from my eye sockets?
Just when you think the children of today are a total write-off and the future is doomed, along comes a great kid like Justin Kievit, the able-bodied wrestler you saw in the video above. During a Brentwood, Tennessee middle school wrestling competition between Freedom Middle School and Sunset Middle School, Sunset wrestler Jared Stevens, who suffers from cerebral palsy, was laid on the mat for his first ever wrestling match. His opponent was Kievit, who, in a tremendous display of sportsmanship and goodwill, assisted Stevens by wrapping the boy’s arm around his own neck and putting Jared in a position to pin him.
It’s easily one of the most moving, poignant, touching scenes in sports you will ever see, especially for those of us who have children with special needs.
From The Tennessean…
At 13, Jared is physically equivalent to a 6 month old, his dad said. Intellectually, he’s very close to his age level. And socially, he hits it out of the park.
Jared practices with the Sunset wrestling team every day, and is often a vocal leader, says wrestling coach Clay Mayes.
After Mayes learned that Jared wanted to have a match, he called his longtime friend and Freedom coach Randy Stevens (no relation).
“It wasn’t about weight class,” says Mayes. “I told him to point me toward the kid who has the kindest heart.”
Easy. That’s Freedom seventh-grader Justin Kievit.
“He’s always stopping to help someone else,” says Coach Stevens. “You just want to take him home.”
“It’s what — a minute, minute and a half maybe?” says Jared’s dad, Phil Stevens. “But it’s the echoes of it that make the difference.”
“It’s the bigger message,” says Stevens. “It’s about all the people who had to give to make it happen.”
There isn’t enough praise that can be heaped upon Justin Kievit for what he did for Jared Stevens. Kid is only 12-years-old and he’s already shown more class and humility than most people will exhibit in their entire life.
[H/T to Cosby Sweaters]