Three Win Courage Awards From NCHSAA
CHAPEL HILL—Three student-athletes will be honored by the North Carolina High School Athletic Association at its 2011 Annual Meeting with the NCHSAA’s A.J. “Tony” Simeon Courage Award.
Emily Newton of Broughton High School in Raleigh, Craig Mitchell of Fuquay-Varina High School and Bradley Greeson of Southern Alamance High School will be presented Courage Awards at the Smith Center on Thursday, May 5.
The Courage Awards are designed to honor individuals who, despite adversity, have demonstrated exemplary character and performance and, as a result, have been an inspiration to all those involved with the programs of the North Carolina High School Athletic Association. They are named in honor of NCHSAA Hall of Famer Tony Simeon, a long-time coach at High Point Central.
Emily Newton has been an inspiration to many, as she overcame a near-fatal liver disorder and had a liver transplant in March of 2010. The transplant proved to be a perfect match, and she was able to go out for basketball in the 2010-11 season, make the team and play once again.
Craig Mitchell had an acoustic neuroma, a tumor in the brain that was growing unusually rapidly and necessitated a 19-hour surgery at UNC Hospitals on December 30, 2010. He battled back, was medically cleared to play baseball and actually pitched in March, with his younger brother serving as his battery mate.
Bradley Greeson has an amazing story, as he has been an outstanding wrestler despite having spina bifida and is basically unable to use his legs. He has had 13 surgeries during his young life, yet he compiled a 46-23 career wrestling record at Southern Alamance and was on pace to win his conference tournament this year as a senior. But he got an infection in his feet and wound up having season-ending surgery in which a toe was amputated.
“These individuals are truly inspirational and exemplify what is great about high school athletics,” said Davis Whitfield, commissioner of the NCHSAA.