Dick and Rick Hoyt

Dick HoytPicture a father-and-son team who together compete in marathons and
triathlons. Measure the sacrifice and the determination it takes to
participate in more than 135 triathlons, to run in over 50 marathons
and 50 half-marathons and numerous road races at lesser distances.
Marvel at events during the past 20 years and at their proficiency: a
personal best time of 2 hours, 40 minutes, 47 seconds for the
marathon’s 26.2 miles and finishing the grueling Ironman at 13:43:37.

When you consider that Dick Hoyt is competing almost weekly at the age
of 60, these statistics are exceptional. When you know that his son
Rick cannot walk or talk, their racing together is inspiring. Their
accomplishments are monumental… all the more so when you learn that
they have climbed mountains and trekked 3,735 miles across America.

Rick was born in 1962 as a spastic paraplegic without the ability to ever speak. Dick and Judy Hoyt were told there was no hope for their son’s development, but they were determined to give him every chance. The dedicated parents struggled with school authorities and against general bias to get him included and accepted. They taught Rick the alphabet, and an interactive computer became his means of communication. His first message conveyed his love of sports.

It was Rick’s quest for independence and inclusion that began their racing career. They have inspired each other to overcome all obstacles. When they run, Dick pushes Rick in a wheelchair. Cycling, Rick is in a pod attached to the front of the bike. In swims, Dick pulls Rick in a customized boat. In the process, their mutual love, dedication and efforts have inspired all who know about them… with special significance for those who are handicapped.

They have received numerous awards, established the Hoyt Fund to help integrate the physically challenged into everyday life, and deliver inspirational speaking engagements across America.

Rick graduated from Boston University in 1993 and now works at Boston College’s computer laboratory, helping special systems for paralyzed persons. In Rick’s own words: “Team Hoyt’s massage is that everyone should b included in everyday life.”

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