I drove past John Payne the other night while he was training for the upcoming St. Jude Marathon, which is in early December. The sun was setting, it was a beautiful evening and a privilege to watch him persevere. He passed cotton field after cotton field, rolling quickly up the long empty road, in his wheelchair.
One of the best things about living in Memphis is being near St. Jude. Every day people come to our city from all over the world, after their own doctors have told them there is nothing more they can do to help their sick child. They come here as their last best hope.
Many of those families end up moving here to be near the hospital, hoping their children can be healed. Many are healed. Many of the families have become part of our community. Some of the children have become our young adults, our college students. Some of the children grew up and became nurses at St. Jude. So did some of their mothers, and now they can help other children and families who come to St. Jude.
How great it is to be around people like that!.... people that make the best of the worst, that become better and not bitter. That look to see how they can help others, instead of giving into their own despair. They are my heroes.
I stopped to take John Payne's picture just cuz I wanted to share it with you and him. Good luck in the marathon, John!