Spencer Zimmerman so badly wanted his friend with cerebral palsy to finish a triathlon that the Arizona Eagle Scout pushed, pulled, and carried his buddy through a 500-meter swim, 3.2-mile run, and 12-mile bike ride.
Spencer, then 13 years old, and his friend Dayton Hayward trained relentlessly — Spencer pulled Dayton in a raft, pushed him in a jogger while running, and towed him on a bike — to prepare for the three-hour race that challenged the physical and mental stamina of both young men.
“I’m honored to receive the American Spirit Award, but the credit goes to Dayton,” Spencer said. “Despite the challenges he faces, he has great spirit. Throughout the training and race, I was just his legs. I believe there’s no reason why Dayton shouldn’t have the opportunity to do what everyone else does.”