Friday, February 09, 2018
Mark McMorris and the Road Back to the Olympics
I watched our athletes march into the stadium in Pyeongchang, South Korea, this morning.
As always it was a proud moment, and I'm looking forward to cheering for all of them.
But I have to admit I will be cheering for one of them even more than all the others.
Because he is my kind of Canadian hero.
And the fact that he's at the Olympics is the closest thing to a miracle.
His name is Mark McMorris, and he is one of the best snowboarders in the world.
But it's what happened to him in March of last year that makes his story so amazing.
For while snowboarding in the backcountry near Whistler he hit a patch of soft snow and smacked into a tree.
He suffered a fractured jaw, a fractured left arm, a pelvic fracture, broken ribs, a ruptured spleen and a collapsed left lung.
He was lucky to be alive, and most people thought it would be the end of his Olympic dream.
But somebody forgot to tell Mark, and he didn't give up.
He spent almost two weeks in hospital and may months in rehab, which as I found out last summer after a motorcycle accident in the Scottish highlands, is both painful and hard.
And somehow he made it back. In November he competed in a Big Air competition in Beijing and won.
And two weeks ago he competed in the X Games in Aspen, and here he is in action...
In the end he came third, but if he hadn't make a slight mistake, he could have finished second.
And considering where he was coming from it was simply awesome, and incredibly inspiring.
And the best thing about Mark is that he is a really nice guy. Down to earth, friendly, a guy who embodies the best values of this country.
So I was really glad to see Rick Mercer pay tribute to him in this rant.
Mark McMorris, my kind of Canadian hero.
Here's to him and all the others.
Go Canada go...