Tom, my past ski coach, is my absolute hero. Every quality listed under what best fits him, happens to completely embody how he lives his life whether he is aware of it or not. Coach Tom is a legend at the ski racing academy I attended and if you talk to anyone who has ever heard of the program, they speak of Tom. I attempt to put how amazing he truly is into words to people who do not know him, but I can't ever seem to do so. He changes athletes lives everyday by being unselfish, loving, caring, involved, extremely healthy, and instills you with a kind of determination that you have to believe in, filling you with relaxed confidence. It's like he has pieces of confidence and gives them away to everyone he comes into contact with. About three years ago, he got news that he had been diagnosed with cancer. We were all devastated by this since we all knew him to be the most health conscious person ever. During dry-land training, we did a lot of breathing exercises in order to calm ourselves before strenuous races. Before one of his surgeries to remove the cancer, he participated in one of the breathing exercises he had taught us in order to calm himself down. The story is that he ended up flat-lining his breathing machine on the operating table for a couple of seconds because he was so relaxed. The doctors were hesitant to continue on with the procedure but his wife, a great woman and teacher at the Academy, assured him that it was just Tom, well being Tom. Today, he is a cancer survivor and though I am no longer a student at this ski academy, Tom always influences my decisions for the better. I imagine what he would say in the situation I am in and I do exactly that. I strive to be more like him on a daily basis because he 100 percent completely changed my life. I do not know where I would be without his influence. If I touch someone in my life as Tom has touched me, I know I will have succeeded. For these reasons, Tom is my hero.
Submitted by Anonymous
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