Jesterville, Fl.- When I first met Isaiah Pead, I was immediately impressed with his ability to make you feel comfortable talking to him. One of those people who, in his easy-going demeanor, was able to exude strength.
We come across people everyday.
Everyday, in many cases, we don’t know what people have been through, or what they are yet to go through.
When life has its times, and is difficult, you are forced to say…Challenge Accepted!
Isaiah D’Vaughn Pead born in Columbus, Ohio has had a lifetime of “challenge accepted” in just 28 years.
High school…Challenge accepted. A track star can’t be a football star in high school. Isaiah wasn’t hearing it.
Pead was always an athletic young man, blessed with speed. Fast feet, in any sport, equals success. That is… as long as it comes with work. Many will tell you, his early success was more his work ethic than the incredible God-given ability. God blessed him with two very fast legs. He put them to work to the best of his ability.
A Letterman in both track and football, he used the most of those abilities.
For a teenage Isaiah, hard work was… Challenge Accepted.
After four years of track and football records, he took those talents and work ethic to the University of Cincinnati.
Immediately faced with questions of whether or not he could continue this success…it was his usual…Challenge Accepted.
Would the track star and football Letterman be able to continue this success with college “men”. Being fast isn’t the only part of sports. It’s hard work. It is dedication. It is sacrifice.
From 2008 through 2011, Pead would have 545 carries and 3288 yards with 27 touchdowns. At 6.03 yards per carry, the challenge was accepted and once again…challenge met.
He would put the icing on that cake with a MVP winning performance in the Senior Bowl.
When drafted in the 2nd round of the 2012 draft by the St. Louis Rams, it gave him his next challenge, make an NFL roster.
He would make the team. He would also bounce around while having knee issues. That is until, on October 11, 2016, he was released from the Dolphins.
His challenge after this, so he thought, would be could he regain what he had prior to these knee issues.
On November 12, 2016, just one month later, Pead was involved in a serious car accident. Making a decision that would change the rest of his life….he was not wearing a seat belt.
“According to the Columbus Division of Police, at about 2:32am, Saturday, Pead was driving his 2011 Cadillac CTS eastbound on I-670 near E. 5th Avenue, when he lost control of the vehicle, and drove off the right side of the roadway. The Cadillac struck the metal guard rail and continued through it. After going through the guard rail the Cadillac became airborne and struck several trees on the way down the embankment. It came to rest about 95 feet from the roadway. During the crash, Pead was ejected from the vehicle.”
That decision, cost him his left leg. Doctors removed all but about 10 inches of the leg because the damage was too severe.
What it didn’t take, was Isaiah’s heart.
The essence of the person I met.
The quiet strength within him has said….Challenge Accepted.
The man who ran a 4.47-second 40 at the 2012 NFL combine isn’t about to slow down now.
Now, with that quiet fire that burns within him, Isaiah is looking to become a track star once again!
Next up, the 2020 Paralympics and of course….challenge accepted.
Many of you know I can be long-winded about what I’m trying to point out. In this case, it isn’t needed. This story speaks for itself. No matter where we are, or what we see, or believe…we are in charge of making tomorrow better. We, all of us, carry strength we don’t know we have in us.
Believe in yourself.
I will leave you with Isaiah’s thoughts on his newest challenge….
“I don’t think about the ‘What if’ because I don’t regret anything I went through when I had two legs,” Pead said. “I came to work every day and put my best foot forward and let things fall where they fell. They just didn’t fall in my favor. I can accept that because I have faith in God, who has a bigger plan. I’m just here to live it out.”