Wow what a moving video! This video documents the injury incurred by British Olympian Derek Redmond. Derek was favored to medal in the 400 meter sprint at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games. Derek had already posted the fastest time during qualifying rounds and was on his way to the finals when tragedy struck. 150 meters into the race Derek’s hamstring completely detached from the bone, he crumpled over in pain on the track and burst into tears.
As Derek sat on the track his mind returned to the Seoul games four years earlier, Derek suffered a torn Achilles tendon during warm-ups and did not even make it to the starting line. He said he kept the newspaper clipping with the results of the Seoul games and displayed next to his name was “DNS”-Did not Start, “I did not want them to write “DNF”-Did not Finish next to my name four years later in Barcelona. I don’t like to give up at anything, and I decided I was going to finish that race if it was the last race I ever did” Footnote, Derek never raced competitively again
Derek rose and began his journey to the finish line. Derek hopped and hobbled until the 300 meter mark when he became aware of someone else on track with him (1 minute and 36 seconds into video) The man seen fighting through security to assist the injured Olympian was Jim Redmond, Derek’s father. As Jim reached his son he told him, “Derek, it’s me, you don’t need to do this.” Derek replied, “I want to finish” Jim said, “Ok. We started this thing together and now we will finish it together.” Jim finally managed to get his son from continuing trying to run and the father and son arm around one another walked to the finish line.
As the finish line grew closer Derek’s emotions took over. Jim kept repeating to his son, “You’re a champion, you’ve got nothing to prove.” They crossed the finish line to a roar from the crowd of 65,000 people who all had risen to their feet and cheered the father and son on.
This video personally moves me and like most art or media, the message will be received a little different for each person. Although I was in awe of the personal courage and will power it took to finish the race. The message that spoke to me was, that we all find our motivation or drive from somewhere, and sometimes the biggest motivators are our biggest failures. You can feel sorry for yourself, or you can pick yourself up and be determined to never feel the way you felt when you failed.
Thanks for reading and share with your friends. Happy Friday! Enjoy your weekend