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Team Hoyt: An Inspiration to All

Team Hoyt is one of the most inspirational father-son groups of all time. The combination of Rick Hoyt (son) and Dick Hoyt (father) is known globally as an inspiration to all. Team Hoyt is famous in the Boston area for completing 34 Boston Marathons. 34! Which alone is an amazing feat, but Team Hoyt are not your typical marathon participants. Rick Hoyt was diagnosed as a spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy at birth in 1962. In 1962 life was a bit different and Rick’s parents were advised to instutionalize Rick since he had little to no hope of carrying out a “normal” life. Rick has never spoken with his voice but he uses his eyes to communicate. In 1972 a group of engineers at Tufts University built a computer just for Rick. It wasn’t as advanced as modern biotechnology is, but it gave Rick a voice! Rick’s first words were actually, “Go Bruins!”. Throughout his life his mother Judy and his father Dick fought to get Rick a proper education and allow him to be admitted to public school, in 1975 Rick started his public education at 13. Rick did not stop there, he went on to college and graduated from Boston University in 1993.

In 1977 Rick told his father that he wanted to run a local 5-mile run for a lacrosse player who had become paralyzed in an accident. Seeing that Rick is wheelchair bound, his father Dick said that he would push him through it. Dick had very little experience as a runner, and Rick and Dick came in second to last. But winning isn’t everything, after the race Rick said “Dad, when I’m running it feels like I’m not handicapped.” Those few words changed everything for the Hoyt family. Together they have ran 257 triathlons, 22 duathlons, 72 marathons, 97 half marathons, and many more.Team Hoyt has a long list of achievements including being inducted into the Ironman Triathlon Hall of Fame and having a day declared for them in the city of Boston. Team Hoyt is truly an inspiration to all. They have even developed their own running chair, which can be found here. Since the 2015 Boston Marathon Bryan Lyons, a friend of the family has taken over Dick’s place in longer, more strenuous competitions. But the Hoyt team still does many local runs and races. The Hoyt Family is an example of resilience and courage. 

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