Random Acts Of Kindness
Sometimes there are heroic moments in sports. Saturday (November 26, 2005) was such a day. I saw a story about Charley Weis, the present Notre Dame Coach, who was formerly the offensive coordinator of the New England Patriots, who coached them to three Super Bowls. I respect him so much that I've become a fan of Notre Dame. The metamorphose started after USC beat the Irish in the closing seconds of the game. The Notre Dame fans protested loudly that USC players had pushed the ball carrier into the end zone, which violated a metaphysical rule of the game. Coach Weis, using a no tears approach, congratulated USC and told the press that he hoped that if his team was in a similar position, a team mate would push his player into the end zone. I liked that!

Today my respect increased. A ten year old boy with an inoperable brain tumor wrote the Notre Dame team and asked if a player could stop by and see him. Notre Dame football was one of his last pleasures in life. To his surprise Coach Weis came by and gave him a signed football. The child, who had lost most of the functions in his limbs, was able to throw a pass to the coach. Coach Weis asked if there was anything he wanted. The child said he wanted to call the first play in the next game. Weis asked what play did he want the team to run. The boy said, "Throw a pass to the right" Two days later the child died.

On Saturday, with Notre Dame at Washington, the Irish started their first series on their own one yard line. The offensive coordinator looked at the coach and asked, What are we going to do now? We have no choice, call the play pass right The quarterback stepped back and threw a pass to a wide open receiver on the right who caught the ball and ran for 13 yards. Notre Dame won the game, and Coach Weis had the team sign the game ball,and he delivered it to the child's family. A heroic day in the human experience. What was amazing about the situation was this amazing act of kindness was accomplished without 4,000 pages of government regulations forcing us to be charitable or kind. It also illustrated the fact that there are at least a few people who keep their word because they gave their word. Life is good, and moments like this inspire me to be a better person. If you would like to have a bumper sticker that says, Practice Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty, leave your name and address in the comment box, and I'll be glad to send you one.

Don Heavrin

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