Thank you, Marnie Hornsby.
To be someone whose life revolves around sports in some way, last week was brutal. On a local level, the Atlanta Falcons gave up a 17-point lead and lost one of Atlanta's most important single-game sporting events. They were just 15 minutes from a moment that would have been mentioned in the same breath as the 1996 Olympics and Hank Aaron - iconic moments.
On a national level, sports continued to prove even the most distinguished of athletic heroes are untrustworthy to the utmost level.
Notre Dame's poster child Manti Te'o was either duped or duped millions. He had a girlfriend, he never met the girlfriend; his girlfriend died, his girlfriend never existed; he knew, he didn't know; he has other personal lifestyles, he doesn't.
It was mind-boggling and painful to see.
Also, this past week was one of the worst sports stories of all time because it started out as arguably the greatest.
Lance Armstrong overcame cancer to rule his sport like no one in history. For Pete's sake, he made Americans follow cycling.
If that wasn't enough, he then brought awareness to a great cause like no other athlete, and launched a whole new way to raise money for other worthy causes. His contribution to philanthropy can never be measured. What can be measured, though, is the amount of illegal substances in his blood stream and the lies that became of it.
Then, there's Marnie Hornsby.
Told in a story from Sunday's edition of The Covington News, Marnie was diagnosed with epilepsy as a child. She did not blend well with others, didn't want to talk to anyone and wouldn't look you in the eye. Then she began to participate in the Special Olympics and got involved in sports. With everyone's successes and failures on display, she focused on her task and was rewarded for her efforts. According to her grandmother, she blossomed.
Sports saved her. Now please, someone save sports with stories more like Marnie's.