At first thought, I was not going to write this. Arrowhead Pride is a place dedicated to the Kansas City Chiefs and all the news that goes along with them. It's not a spot for other sporting news, especially something outside of football.
Then again, Arrowhead Pride is built on sports fans, family and togetherness. Those are the same qualities the late, great Stuart Scott brought to life. Scott, a longtime ESPN SportsCenter anchor, passed away at 49 years old on Sunday morning. He was an inspiration to a generation, a trendsetter, a leader. Scott was never concerned about fitting in or being lauded by the national media. For him, it was about bringing genuine self-expression to the public.
When I was in college, I was lucky enough to land a job with ESPN Monday Night Football in 2007. My first assignment was to work a game between the Buffalo Bills and Dallas Cowboys at Ralph Wilson Stadium. As you can imagine, I was nervous as hell. Plenty of ESPN personalities were gracious and warm, including Scott. So many big-time talents are aloof and tired of dealing with the common man. Scott was anything but, always ready and willing to offer a warm, reassuring smile to a young, 19-year old kid who was freezing on the sideline.
Throughout my part-time tenure with ESPN, I saw Scott on a handful of other occasions. One night, on a cold evening at Gillette Stadium, Scott watched the game with two friends of mine, Emmitt Smith and myself. Smith and Scott were enjoying the contest, going back and forth about the action but allowing us into their conversation, mostly because Scott kept giving us ins to stay involved. He was a such a nice man, and will be sorely missed.
So often, life gets in the way of the things that matter. We get so wrapped up in our minor problems that we no longer allow ourselves to enjoy the beauty of a sunset or the warm embrace of a loved one. We forget how much it matters to smile, to look someone in the eye and have an unspoken feeling that speaks deafening volumes. We spend such precious moments in this lifetime missing the point.
Scott had been battling cancer since 2007 and fought until Sunday. Somewhere along the way, he must have realized he would succumb to this horrific illness, knowing he would leave behind two beautiful teenage daughters, Sydni and Taelor. Yet, from all accounts, Scott fought bravely until the end, leaving a legacy which will endure the test of time.
Ultimately, the memory of Scott should not be about your views on Scott's broadcasting style. It should be on the human being he was and the morals he stood for. It should be about the father he was to his two daughters and the kind man he was to strangers.
Take it from me, he truly cared about even the little people, including a nervous kid in Buffalo.
Rest easy, Stuart.