Hero Meets Hero

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Ben Baltz knew something was wrong, a half-mile from the finish line. He was participating in the Sea Turtle Triathlon on Pensacola Beach, when his leg wobbles, and then the screws in his prosthetic leg let go leaving him on the ground. Having already completed 3/4th of the triathlon, with the biking and swimming behind him, 11-year-old Ben had a dilemma of how he was going to cross the finish line.

Quitting was not an option that day nor has it been any day since Ben Baltz lost his leg to osteosaroma, a form of bone cancer, when he was 7 years-old. As he contemplated whether to crawl or hop the final half-mile Matthew Morgan, a Marine who is stationed in Pensacola, offered to do a little more than what he volunteered to do…passing out water to contestants.

Pfc Morgan ran to Ben’s aid with one simple question, “you need some help?”

At first young Ben, said no, determined to fix his prosthetic leg as he done before while playing soccer. But when no quick fix materialized he accepted Morgan’s offer and climbed on his back to finish the triathlon. As fellow Marines saw what was taking place they fell into a formation around Pfc Morgan and Baltz to usher both of them to the finish line complete with Marine cadence every step of the way.

Quitting has never been a part of Ben Baltz’s vocabulary since losing his leg to cancer. This avid athlete plays basketball, soccer, and competes is triathlons…a hero!

And Matthew Morgan’s actions are in line with his Marine training, a Marine is a Marine whether or duty or volunteering at an event…a hero! 

In Baltz’s and Morgan’s eyes this was no big thing, yet the world has taken notice of what took place that day. Baltz’s competes despite his circumstances and Pfc Morgan’s reacts to circumstances as he was trained…protect, defend, and bring aid.

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~We All Have Something To Learn ~

  • Fate can impact our world, but we have a choice of how fate will impact how we live our lives…obstacles and all.
  • Fate can bring opportunities to our world where we can leverage our experience, training, and gifts to make a difference in the lives of those who God puts in our path.

Thank you Ben Baltz and Pfc Matthew Morgan for living and leading well, the lessons your lives teach make you both heroes!  

So what is your takeaway from this story? Leave a comment below. 


trusting God period!

Resource Credits:

Christina Ng @ChristinaNg27 with ABC World News.

Katie Tammen @KatieTnwfnd with The News Herald.

Photos: Kim Baltz from Marine Corp’s Times and Kim Baltz from ABC World News

Video: Marcus McDowell from YouTube

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