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Student Overcomes Adversity to Return to His Favorite Sport

Antwanm McHenry,   West Park Elementary Academy
A Hero's Breakfast
Student Leadership
Student Overcomes Adversity to Return to His Favorite Sport

Adversity affects people from all walks of life and does not discriminate. How you respond to it determines whether you will be triumphant or not. This brings us to the story of MS, a 13-year-old student at West Park Academy of Fine Arts & Technology in Chicago, IL. M and his family reside on the West Side of the city. Growing up in a major city has its challenges, so M knows that he has to be on his P’s and Q’s in order to meet his goals. He does his best to try to stay on top of his school work and home responsibilities, and like every other child he also wants to have fun. On April 25, 2014, M, his little brother, and some friends decided to spend part of their day playing basketball. However, that day would not be a regular day. 

While playing basketball they heard what sounded like a gunshot that some thought was a firecracker, and as a precautionary measure M put his little brother behind him. Again the sound repeated and M knew it was a gunshot, so he sprang into action trying to get his brother out of harm’s way, but he himself was shot in the leg. Thankfully they managed to make it to the house of a community member who called the police and the ambulance. 

Being an avid sports lover, M wanted to know if he would be able to participate in many of the sports that he loved, mainly football. He was assured that he would be able to continue playing sports but that football would probably be a challenge for him due to the strenuous requirements of the sport. He was a little disappointed but not deterred from continuing to pursue his love of the sport. M’s rehab took two months due to much of it being delivered by his family and himself, but he was able to return to school and get back on track to finish the 2014-2015 school year. He is thankful to those who supported him through his ordeal, specifically his family and his homeroom teacher Mr. G. 

M learned a few lessons that he thinks will be with him throughout life. He learned to be observant of his surroundings and to never give up on his goals!

What challenges did you face and how did you overcome them?

One of the challenges for this student was rehabilitation. He was not able to connect with a therapist so he had to do a lot of therapy himself.