Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Alec's At Bat

Two years ago, I was happy to fulfill Jan Baron's request to emcee a fundraising dinner for the Gateway Chapter of the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of America. A remarkable group of people filled the room that night, all dedicated to helping people. I was especially moved by the story told by a teenage girl who talked about how CCFA and a team of doctors and nurses had helped her get through some very tough times, and how she just wanted to be treated like every other kid.

I was reminded of her story as I read a wonderful piece in today's Detroit Free Press by Jeff Seidel. It's the inspirational story of a boy named Alec, who lives in excruciating pain because he suffers from Crohn's disease. Like that teen girl, Alec lives a life his friends don't understand.

When he's not in the hospital getting IV treatments or spending time in a wheelchair, Alec tries to play Little League baseball. He's not very good -- Alec went almost the entire season without a hit -- but he tries, and his coaches didn't hesitate to send him to the plate against the best team in the league in the bottom of the 7th with two outs and two men on.

What happened next is like something from a Hollywood script, but better. You'll want to read the whole story.