Take a Break: A Champ at BMX, Life
Updated: Tuesday, July 2 2013, 11:30 AM EDT
Cole Stewart is ten years old. Like any other boy his age, he enjoys taking
his bike out for a ride. But his rides
usually happen at BMX tracks.
Cole started riding when he was just 4 years old. His 3 year old brother Dean started at age 2.
Now 3, Dean is already one of the best young racers in the
world. But when it comes to the trophy
count he's got some catching up to do. Cole
has amassed more in a few years that most people earn in a lifetime.
More than a thousand is his rough estimate.
competition in his age group, Cole is ranked #1 in New York state.
“And he just keeps getting better, “says Tonya Stewart, the
boys' mom. When she talks about Cole
getting better, she's not just referencing his racing. Cole was born with Hirchsprung's disease.
Hirchsprung's is a disorder that causes gastrointestinal
failure. It is typically diagnosed
shortly after birth, leading to a barrage of tests surgeries, most of which Cole
can still remember.
“I had several,” he recalls. “Like 10 or 11.”
“We were in the hospital with other families and their child
didn’t make it out of the hospital, more than once, with the same diagnosis,”
Just recently, Cole got good news from doctors. He's doing well enough to scale back on
hospital visits. And that’s important, especially
when you consider he has a little brother hot on his heels.
“He’s really a brave courageous guy,” says Tonya.
“I’m just so incredibly proud of how he lives his life every
day and doesn’t take it for granted.”