At times, our circumstances don’t always seem to be in line with our personal desires. Because of this understanding, many of us tend to accept our circumstances with hopes of making the best of it.
This is exactly what Ellis Hill was thinking when his son Darrell Hill was invited to represent his country in the U.S. Olympic team after qualifying on his first try. You see, the thought of him making it out to Rio de Janeiro was only a dream as it was a trip that he
couldn’t possibly afford.
“It wasn’t in the cards at all,” Ellis told Upworthy. “I was thinking about getting a good bag of popcorn and sitting down to watch it on TV.”
Little did he know, his passenger Liz Willock had other plans.
“I was just crushed because any good parent would want to see their son or daughter compete as Olympian,” Willock told Upworthy. “I said, ‘Ellis, you’re an Olympic father! You need to go.'”
Be cause of the experience in her line of work and the connections she had established over the years, Liz knew that she’d be able to make this trip to Rio a reality.
After reaching out to Ellis’ son Darrell, Wilcock would go on to lauch a GoFundMe campaign so that the Olympian’s father wouldn’t miss such a moment.
Because of their efforts, they were able to raise $8,200, exceeding their initial goal of $7,500.
Despite all of her efforts, Willock shares this light with the handful of strangers that helped make the fundraiser successful. Among them included a United Airlines pilot that pitched in with his personal air miles in order to cover Ellis’ trip and the family of Joe Kovacs, one of Darrell’s teammates, being among the first to donate in making this trip possible.
Ellis is pretty “ecstatic” for this opportunity considering the fact he had never been outside of the country.
“This is really a big deal in our family right now,” he said.
Part of the people that stayed behind to cheer for Darrell include his mother, siblings, grandparents and friends scattered throughout the country.
Although Ellis doesn’t count on seeing his son Darrel until after he’s competed, the opportunity for this experience in itself is in itself a success, he explained.
“It’s just an awesome experience for a kid to put forth the effort and stick to it over the years, and actually train … and get it on the first time around,” he said.
While every parent’s ultimate dream is for their child to win, bringing the medal home, Ellis stated that he’s still impressed no matter the outcome.
“The family and friends are extremely happy, and we’re just waiting for him to stay focused and put forth the best effort he possibly can for himself.”
Let’s give Liz Willock a round of a applause for helping #Rewordit!