#1 o.Theres that thunder in your heart when you hear the von love520 13.07.2019 06:56

EUGENE, Ore. -- Army reservist Sam Kendricks now gets to represent his country in a whole new way.On the Fourth of July, the second lieutenant captured the pole vault crown with a U.S. Track and Field Trials record jump that earned him an Olympic spot for Rio. He proudly waved around his red, white and blue flag -- with a little extra vigor, too.I love to have the colors (of the flag) in my hands, Kendricks said. Im lucky and Im very thankful for the grace to befall on me that I get to do this and compete for my country.My commitment to my country comes first and foremost.It was a big day all around for the Armed Forces in the pole vault, with U.S. Air Force star Cale Simmons taking second. Logan Cunningham was third.There were two other Air Force members in the field as well -- Dylan Bell and Joey Uhle, who had a mishap with his pole when it snapped in the middle of one of his jumps. Uhle didnt clear a height.It messes with your mind a bit, throws you off your balance, Uhle said.Kendricks was proud of his fellow servicemen.All great jumpers and serving their country on two fronts, Kendricks said.The 23-year-old certainly didnt disappoint on this day as he cleared 19 feet, 4 3/4 inches (5.91 meters) to break the trials record set by Tim Mack in 2004. It just so happened that Mack was on the sideline and encouraging Kendricks to top his mark.Later, Mack placed the gold medal around Kendricks neck.The meet record was a by-product of a lot of great jumping, Kendricks said. I was lucky enough to have a coach who had a plan.For that, he gave thanks to his dad, who happens to double as Kendricks coach. They hugged after he won.That was our goal, come out here and jump the bars like we did in practice, said Kendricks, a two-time NCAA champion at Mississippi who still trains in Oxford.This was quite a contrast to four years ago at trials, when Kendricks showed up in Eugene ready to compete -- but didnt. He boarded the plane with a spot in the field, but when he landed he was informed that, through some late additions, he was out.Kendricks scrambled to buy a ticket and watched from the stands.I saw it as a blessing. It really allowed me to have a hard goal, not to be on the bubble again, Kendricks said. An easy goal to set, but not necessarily easy to obtain when you dont know what future looks like. I made that promise, made stronger by fact I had to watch from sidelines.He was the clear favorite in this event, especially after taking second at the world indoor championships four months ago. Whats more, he had the second-best vault in the world this season, only trailing Olympic champion Renaud Lavillenie of France.The fans had his back, too.Theres that thunder in your heart when you hear the crowd behind you, especially when you look around, Kendricks said. Its funny, when you look to the left, you hear them right there in your ear, and then you look to your right and hear that clap, you get that double heartbeat action.It made me feel like everyone was behind me, and thats what I love about the pole vault. We get to be out there all day and you can really feel the crowd get behind you. Hydro Flask Cosè . Kozun faked to the forehand and beat Monsters starter, Calvin Pickard, pad side in the second round for the winner. Spencer Abbott also scored in the shootout for the Marlies (25-13-4). Hydro Flask Saldi . The showiest items on Calgarys lot were forwards Mike Cammalleri and Lee Stempniak. Both will be unrestricted free agents this summer. http://www.italiahydroflask.it/s-well-bottiglia-italia.html . -- Mike Smith never saw his first NHL goal go in. Hydro Flask Italia . -- Edmontons Val Sweeting is two wins away from a trip to Winnipeg to play in Canadas Road of the Rings in December. Swell Bottle Italia . Halladay signed a one-day contract with the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday that allowed the veteran right-hander to retire as a member of team with which he broke into the majors and spent the bulk of his distinguished 16-year career. In October, espnWs weekly essay series will focus on heroes.Even as a high school athlete, my father, Hannibal Ware, was known for his long shooting range. He and his youngest brother, James, were a fearless duo on the court. In Lexington, Kentucky, the two lanky teenagers were known as the Ware boys.In 1968, my father played collegiate hoops at the University of the Virgin Islands. When I was a kid in grade school, he loved telling me stories about those days as a young hoops star. An opponent once yelled out, Dont let the Yankee shoot! according to my father.My father could tell a story better than anyone I have ever met. And to this day, I can still see his lean brown form standing in my grandmothers living room reenacting his winning jump shot.I remember watching him stand behind the 3-point line on our neighborhood basketball court. He made so many baskets in a row, it felt like magic. He loved perfecting his basketball skills.He never made it to the pros, but he imparted his basketball knowledge to my sister, Saneda, and me. Be aggressive when going inside, he told me. Dont play with fear.In high school, I wore a jersey emblazoned with his number -- 14. Maybe, I thought, it would bring me luck. Or maybe I was just proud to wear the same number as a superstar. I was a pretty good player. Like him, I had a consistent jump shot of my own and was one of the star players on the Bryan Station Middle Schools Bearcats. I am very proud that both my father and I were part of teams that won championships for Bryan Station.Even though I chose not to continue my basketball career after middle school, I still feel proud knowing that I shared such an important interest with him. Basketball will always remind me of the special moments that connected us.But in my second year of college, I received a terrible shock. My fatheer was diagnosed with throat cancer.dddddddddddd What started off as a tiny bump on his neck gradually grew into a large tumor.My father was stubborn and unwilling to go for a checkup. My grandmother, sister and I watched as he slowly deteriorated. He began to forget little things. He was aware of his decline. I could see the fear on my fathers face at times. It was difficult watching my?hero meet his kryptonite. He spoke as if he would beat cancer, but deep down I believe he knew his fate.During the last stages of his illness, I dropped out of school. The stress of witnessing my fathers illness left me in a dark place. I remember lying to my uncle about still being enrolled at the University of Kentucky. I was too ashamed to say that I had failed.I watched my Dad -- my first love -- wither away in a nursing home. I saw the light fading from his large almond eyes and I knew that he was leaving me. He would stare off into space, listening to R&B. In his last days he seemed to find some peace listening to slow music. I can still see him breathing, gasping for air.My life will forever be changed by these events. I will always have the special moments we shared to bring me joy. His love for his children and basketball taught me compassion and commitment. Eventually, I found the strength to go back to school and graduate with a masters degree in social work.So Daddy, thank you for the wonderful moments we shared. Thank you for your kind heart and your dedication to others. Thank you for being my first love and my first encounter with a real-life superhero.Ebonie Ware is a writer based in Kentucky. She started the blog Ware Im Coming From.?Follow her on Instagram?for?inspirational n

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