THE EARLY YEARS:
Team Hoyt VB is a sub-chapter of The Hoyt Foundation, founded by Dick and Rick Hoyt. Born in 1962, Rick was diagnosed as a spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy. Dick and his then wife, Judy, were advised to institutionalize Rick because there was no chance of him recovering, and little hope for Rick to live a 'normal' life. This was just the beginning of Dick and Judy's quest for Rick's inclusion in community, sports, education and one day, the workplace.
THE BEGINNING OF TEAM HOYT VIRGINIA BEACH:
In 2003, one of Virginia Beach's local investigative news reporters, Mike Mather, who works for WTKR News Channel 3, became the father to three triplet boys. During their labor and delivery, complications arose and eventually one of his sons, Owen Mather, would be diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy. During the depths of his dispair, Mike came across Rick's and Dick's story and began to educate himself on all things Team Hoyt. And another team was born. In 2006, alongside the Hoyts, the father-and-son duo of Mike and Owen Mather competed in their first Half Marathon, the Rock n' Roll.
During another race that year (the Shamrock Marathon), another father was closely watching the Hoyt/Mather team and was quickly inspired by what he saw on the course. Trey White, a local dentist with Oceanfront Dentistry in Virginia Beach, had found out that his daughter, Katie White, had Prader Willi Syndrome. Prader Willi is a complex genetic disorder of the 15th chromosome; the most common known genetic cause of life-threatening obesity in children. Between September and March of that year, this daddy/daughter team began training, and debuted the newest addition to Team Hoyt during the Shamrock Half-Marathon.
During the run and after lengthy discussion, Dr. White convinced Rick and Dick Hoyt to allow him to use their name to form what is now known as Team Hoyt Virginia Beach. With the enduring oversight from both the Mather and the White family, along with countless riders, runners and volunteers, Team Hoyt Virginia Beach remains the premiere running inclusion foundation of it's kind and hosts riders and athletes in over 30 runs a year—including 5k's, marathons, half marathons and now triathlons!