MEMPHIS, TN - (WMC-TV) – One crucial part of New York City's recovery will be the running of the New York City Marathon this weekend. A Mid-South runner plans to be there and already knows what it means to triumph over tragedy.
Austin Selby was hit by a car and doctors weren't sure if he'd ever run again. After nearly two years of recovery, he'll complete his comeback this weekend in a city that's just beginning one of its' own.
Runners for Arlington High School's track team have heard their coach's story.
"It's honestly given me a lot of inspiration to say the least," runner Nick Pinarksi said.
Almost two years ago, a sea of flashing lights filled the sky above where Austin Selby was hit by an out-of-control car. He was on his nightly run.
"A lot of things went through my head: my wife, my kids, and definitely my ability to run," Selby said.
From the accident until now, Selby's comeback has been a long one. The accomplished marathon runner fought broken bones and surgeries, but also doubters that told him he'd never run again.
"When he said that I remember saying, 'yeah right' and I told my wife when I walked out of there, 'I'm going to prove him wrong,'" said Selby.
And he'll do it this weekend.
Despite Hurricane Sandy, The New York City Marathon will go on. And so will Selby, after building the strength to return to a familiar race under very different circumstances.
But not before he sees his players' tackle their goals at their state meet in Nashville.
"I just think it's awesome he's going to take time out of his personal thing to come out and watch us," Nick Pinarksi said.
If anyone knows the power of support, it's Selby.
"Recovering from anything or setting a goal, you can't do it by yourself. No one man is an island," Selby said.
While Selby has finished the New York City marathon in under three hours before, he said his goal this weekend is to just have fun and run as hard as he can.