As a photographer on the sidelines at Kentucky Athletic events… I’m always searching for ‘that one moment’. My eyes are always searching the team, the crowd, the coaches… etc. In searching for that one moment… a lot of times, my hope is that the picture I capture will inspire others. Selfishly, I’m always trying to put myself in a position where I don’t see other photographers, so I could capture something unique and unlike anything else my Twitter timeline is showing.
Sure I can capture a shot of Stephen Johnson throwing a long-bomb, Baker going up for a catch, or Benny Snell making symbols with his hands that I smile at and act like I know what they mean… but searching even deeper than just a picture to try and get a player to hit that FAV or RT button… something much deeper.
Well during the Blue White Spring game at Commonwealth Stadium… my little home family camera (which a couple media members laughed at Friday night) not only captured a few images that I hope will inspire others… but for the first time since I’ve been a photographer… inspired me. I don’t mean it in the cliche ‘#blessed’ kind of way… I mean it in a genuine, I have life-struggles and needed some inspiration and hope to help me this Easter weekend kind of way. My first child is about to be born, and my life has just been crazy leading up to this moment… I needed a breath of fresh air. What I ended up getting though was not only a breath of fresh air… but eyes full of tears as I sat in my car after the Spring Game viewing the photos I’m about to share.
The cover photo for this article, I’m sure many people have seen as The Bleacher Report did a great job covering what I believe the real story was on Friday under-the-lights. If pictures are worth 1000 words… I believe these pictures are worth a little more…
The story from Friday night is Ryan Cremeens. As you view these photos… keep in mind that Ryan is nine-years-old, was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma, and according to ESPN, ‘his final session of chemotherapy was on March 30’ as Ryan beat his cancer.
Denzil Ware putting his helmet on cancer survivor Ryan Cremeens as Boom Williams pats Ryan’s back.
Super Bowl winner and former Wildcat, Danny Trevathan shaking Ryan’s hand after being recognized by the SEC Network.
Boom Williams, Denzil Ware, and CJ Conrad all showing love while a smile beams from Ryan’s face.
Stephen Johnson signing gloves for Ryan Cremeens after Ryan patiently waited for Stephen to get finished with his SEC Network post-game interview.
I’ll end the article with this last picture…
I used to always tell people that you could do anything you set your mind to. I would motivate and coach so many people all-the-while struggling to believe ‘the talk’ myself. When I saw Ryan Cremeens with his cape on, holding his football, and pointing to the Kentucky written across his uniform… for the first time in a long time… I believed… that anything… is possible. If you’re reading this… thank you for changing my life Ryan. You’re more than a moment on a Friday night… you’re an inspiration.