By Dave Denniston
CARLSBAD, California, December 13. WINTER break is upon us. Kids are going to be out of school starting this week, if they aren’t already. College kids are coming home, many of them for the first time in months. And if there is snow, chances are, people are going to be playing in it. Whether it is skiing, snowboarding or sledding, I would like to remind all of you to be careful.
Already this week, I received an e-mail from a swim coach in Loveland, Colorado informing me that one of his swimmers has been paralyzed. John Morris was hurt Friday in a snowboarding accident in Kansas. He and some friends made some jumps. John landed one of the jumps wrong and broke his back. His best friend was with him and kept him calm until the ambulance came. Just like yours truly, the doctors told him it was in God’s hands if he ever walks again. John Morris and his family need your prayers.
For some reason, we swimmers have a rough time on frozen water. With all the fun that surrounds us this holiday season, and for many of us just looking to get out of the house to avoid the in-laws for a couple hours, be careful in the risks that you take. Take calculated risks when you are playing in the snow, and be aware of the possible dangers that can come your way. (Those of you in California, put sunscreen on when you are at the beach)
John’s best friend was with him until the paramedics arrived, comforting him and keeping him calm. Just like my best friend, Andy Miller, was with me and managed to get me off of that mountain because of his quick thinking. Our friends and family comfort us and are enjoyable to be around. Many of us don’t appreciate the friendships we have until we need that person or something happens to them. Don’t wait for a catastrophe or a crisis to be grateful for the friends and family you have. Having close friends is one of the best parts of the Holiday Season.
So what’s the motivation this week? Enjoy your time with friends and family this season, but don’t break your back to do it.