Tom Willis has accomplished a long-term goal he set for himself as a young adult: pitch the first pitch in every single MLB stadium. One thing about him, however, was that he was born without arms. That didn’t stop him as he completed his goal today by throwing the first pitch at the Colorado Rockies game.
Willis took off his shoe, grabbed the ball with his toes and sole, and fired a punch. MLB fans couldn’t help but feel inspired as they watched Willis shoot on a perfect pitch.
Tom Willis is truly inspirational and reminds everyone that nothing is impossible if you put your mind to it. He is a role model for all who are faced with disabilities. He has a great message and it’s great to see MLB embrace it.
Willis became a motivational speaker for people with disabilities in 2002. In 2008, he was spotted by a local San Diego TV station while he was showing students how to throw tennis balls and frisbees. The television station happened to be the San Diego Padres’ flagship station.
One of the station’s editors joked that he had a pretty good fastball. Willis responded that if it was such a good fastball they should let him pitch the first pitch in the park. He was invited to Petco Park to pitch the first pitch at a Padres game on May 27, 2008.
Willis was so well received in San Diego that he thought it was the perfect way to raise awareness for people with disabilities. Then he decided to make it his goal to pitch in every single MLB park.
It’s great to see someone achieve a goal they set out to achieve, let alone someone in Tom Willis’ position. As someone who is also handicapped by a disability, what they have done matters.
MLB, giving Tom Willis a platform to inspire him is great for the sport
No one should ever be told they can’t do something because they can’t do it. It doesn’t matter where you’re from, what disability you have, how old you are, etc. If you put your mind to it and work hard enough, anything is possible.
People with disabilities often see people with disabilities as helpless, but this shows everyone that there is a solution to every problem. Having achieved his goal of pitching the first pitch at every MLB stadium, it will be interesting to see what the future holds for him.
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