CNN iReport is always incredibly reliable at bringing those work-hour doses of raw humanity. One of this week’s features continues the trend of blatant emotion - it’s a touching story from Florida’s Sea Turtle Tri-Kids Triathlon. A young boy who was struggling to finish the race was picked up and helped to the finish line by some Marines who were in attendance.
The images do the feeling, but the words give the context.
At six years old, Ben was diagnosed with bone cancer in his right leg and had his fibula and tibia removed. He walks with a mechanical knee and prosthetic walking leg, which he switches out for a running leg to play sports (including soccer, baseball and children’s triathlons). On Sunday, Ben completed the 150-yard swim and 4-mile bike ride and half of the one-mile run when a screw came loose and his running leg broke in half.
His mom was standing at the finish line, wondering what happened. ‘It was only a mile, I knew he was tired, I was like, ‘Where is he, where is he, where is he,’ his mother, Kim Baltz, told CNN iReport. ‘All of a sudden the announcer just said, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, I want you to turn around and look at what’s happening on the course’ … Everybody was crying. It was just very touching that the Marines were there. They picked him up and everybody was cheering and just giving them support and Ben support.’
Leave it to members of the US Marine Corp to set an example of unfiltered teamwork and display our inherent empathy and togetherness.
Read the full (incredible) iReport + see all the photos on CNN’s website [HERE].