Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Superman's Strength Was Truely Superhuman

Superman died October 10, 2004 from heart failure. Christopher Reeves, the actor who starred in the in the "Superman" movies and was paralysed in a horse back riding accident in 1995.

Is the disability and early death of this courageous, intensely positive and generous man a tragedy?

Sure it is - for those he left behind.

But his life? His life was a triumph.

Look... we're all going to pass away some day and I know many of you reading this have lost people very close to you. I certainly have. There's no two ways around it. It hurts. But in the end what really matters? It's all about what you do with what you've got while you're here. Reality is that we don't always have total control over all the things in our lives. What we do have control over is our attitude and life all boils down to this:

We can spread light or we can spread darkness.

It's our choice, moment by moment, and 'circumstances' don't have a thing to do with it. What are you spreading?

Christopher Reeves had a vision of a better world - in his case better treatment for spinal cord injury patients - and he promoted it relentlessly.

Here's what Dr. John McDonald, the physician who worked with Reeves, had to say about his life: "Before him there was really no hope. If you had a spinal cord injury like his there was not much that could be done, but he's changed all that. He's demonstrated that there is hope and that there are things that can be done."

How far did the influence of Christopher Reeve, universally known as SUPERMAN, spread... it touched every corner of the globe!At Red's Spinal Cord Research Laboratory at the University of WA, here in Perth, recognised as the Western World's most isolated city, Reeves passing last week is being mourned.

According to Dr Giles Plant, a good friend of Dr John McDonald, who moved to Perth to pioneer this research: "He was Superman. He wanted to use his notoriety for the good of getting this field (spinal cord research) moving and he succeeded in that."

According to Dr Plant; "The impact of Christopher made I don't think anyone can put into words really, it changed everything. It changed the perspective of how people did work on spinal cord injury. It changed from being a field that no one touched to something that a lot of people touch now."Not everyone is going to have as dramatic a life story as Christopher Reeves, but everyone reading this can use the lessons they learn in The Maverick Spirit and elsewhere to transform circumstances, to make things better... to bend steel in your bare hands.

- Wayne Mansfield


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