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Equality North East

Letters from America: Deaf sportsman Derrick Coleman inspires others to achieve

From a young age, Derrick Coleman was told that he would never be able to achieve his dream. “But I’ve been deaf since I was three,” he explained in a recent advertisement, “so I didn’t listen.”

Now Coleman has achieved his dream and more. He had always wanted to be a professional sportsman – in particular, an American footballer. Despite initially being passed over for a professional career, Coleman persevered and worked hard. He ended up being signed to the Seattle Seahawks and is believed to be the National Football League’s first deaf offensive player. He, along with his team, is now headed to the Super Bowl on 2 February – the pinnacle of achievement for anyone in the sport.

His colleagues have praised him for his talents and motivation on and off the field. Speaking to the Bleacher Report website, fellow Seahawk Zach Miller said: “Physically, he’s a star, straight up. Beyond that, he’s a lot more. He's a hero to a lot of people.”

Another Seattle player, Richard Sherman, added: “He's a humble guy who works hard and has never made an excuse. He’s an inspiration.”

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February 6, 2014

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