Finishing the fight

[S]hortly after I woke up this morning, the news hit me like a ton of bricks.
I am a sports writer. I am also a sports fan, and I grew up watching SportsCenter on ESPN to catch up on highlights and stories.
One of the people who brought me those stories on nearly a daily basis was Stuart Scott.
His unique style and delivery made him hilarious to a boy in elementary school, who would one day grow up and realize he was a pioneer.
He had coined sayings and crafted catchphrases, which made his presence on a broadcast unmistakable even when he was off camera.
Stuart Scott, however, was more than a man on television who introduced the country to,”Booyah!”
He was more than the man who helped us know beyond a shadow of a doubt when something was, “as cool as the other side of the pillow.”
His work ethic was admirable, but something else proved more so to me when I entered the journalism field.
The news business, at times, is an unrelenting whirlwind.
A friend of mine once compared it to working to stay ahead of a freight train.
Stuart Scott wasn’t shy about or afraid of stepping off of the track and taking time to smell the roses growing beside it.
People were important to him, and he made sure America knew it.
He took every possible opportunity to let us know how much joy he got from his family, friends and being a dad.
I hope his daughters and family know no matter the fame, celebrity or influence of those he interviewed, it was obvious Stuart Scott held the highest esteem for them and loved them dearly.
Scott probably knew of the platform he had sitting behind the SportsCenter desk, but he never acted like he did.
Instead, he continued to use his platform to make a difference.
During his seven-year fight against cancer he worked as long as he was able.
He never stopped fighting, and he let us behind the scenes.
What we saw was nothing short of inspirational.
He showed us even when life knocks you down, the best thing to do is not to wallow on the ground but to stand again and move forward.
He gave new meaning to never giving up.
He gave scores of struggling the spark they needed, and countless people admired his courage.
The evidence is in the tributes soaring through the airwaves and speeding across cyberspace today.
It’s in the words of those who worked with him.
It’s visible in the tears of those whom he called friends, and it’s woven throughout the legacy he left behind.
Stuart Scott did not lose his fight against cancer today.
He finished it.

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