A few years ago, during the Para-Olympics
in Seattle, nine participants, all mentally
retarded or physically challenged, had aligned
themselves for the 100 meter hurdles.
Although at the given signal they didn't
start exactly at that moment, nor orderly, they
were determined to finish the race and thus win.
All they had to do in order to win the race was
to finish it.
All managed to finish it, except for a
young athlete that fell over the runway passage
of the first hedge. Because of the pain and of
the sorrow, he began to cry. The others hearing
his cry came back for him. They slowed down and
eventually they stopped.
In that day an unprecedented situation
occurred, eight out of the nine athletes
returned in order to help the ninth athlete,
which was in need of assistance. A girl with
the down syndrome came up to the wounded to
give him a kiss and to encourage him:
"Do not worry, the pain will go away."
Although that day the world record was not
beaten from any point of view, but the race was
finished by all nice athletes which past the
finish line together, holding each other with
The whole stadium stood up and cheered
them for several minutes. They were even more
enthusiastic in the presence of such a wonderful
gesture then when a record was beaten.
Why was this possible?
Because we all know well, that basically,
the most important thing in this life is not
so much winning by yourself, but helping others
to win as well, even if you have to slow down
and maybe turn back to help others.
"Getting together is a beginning; staying
together is a step forward; working together
is a success."