Grand Rapids, MI -- 39-year-old Rick and 13-year-old Madison van Beek completed the the Sanford and Sun sprint triathlon on Sunday. That's a 0.3-mile swim, 12.4-mile bike ride and 3.1-mile run. And Maddy is unable to walk because she battles cerebral palsy.
Rick, once a two pack a day smoker, quit and began training so he could compete with his daughter through 'Team Maddy.' 'She functions like a three-month-old, and one of the very few things that we know she enjoys is being outside, being in the water, feeling the breeze in her hair and in her face,' he said.
So Rick pulls her in a kayak in the water, hauls her in a cart behind his bike, and pushes her in a buggy for the run.
Smiling and or crying yet? Here comes the video.
'[The emotion] drives me or inspires me to do the things that I do,' he wrote on his blog last year. 'Call it inspiration, call it motivation, call it what ever you want, I call it LOVE.
'That will never fade...She is my heart and I am her legs, though someday she might not physically be able to be there with me, she will always be in my heart, quietly cheering me on.'
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