6 Years ago Javier Perez decided to go for a jog after finishing his work day as principal of South Dade High School in Homestead. Little did he know that it would be the last jog of his life, at least for a while?
Running after work with his two buddies was a regular routine amongst friends. That day Javier remembers that he actually beat his friends for the first time ever. The irony of what came after was devastating.
I went to high school with Javier Perez at La Progresiva School in the heart of Little Havana. I was a couple of years younger than him but I do recall that he was a very athletic person. He was in the baseball team and later went on to play professionally before deciding to coach instead.
On this late afternoon Javier was at his son’s playoff game just observing. He was a little emotional because his son had just struck out for the first time ever and he knew his son was taking it really bad. Javier saw a familiar face and went to say hello to a friend that was close to right field while the game was going on. He walked by right field, which is where his son was supposed to be standing when all of a sudden Javier sees, a car heading straight for him. It was too late because Javier was struck by the vehicle and his legs were pinned under it. The whole afternoon was surreal because what happened was horrible. The dust that was raised as a result of this drunk driver driving over the clay that makes up the field made knowing what really happened almost impossible to onlookers at first.
Javier Perez was transported to Kendall Regional Hospital where a month later he found out the car was being driven by a woman who was drunk. Javier suffered injuries that are too many to name. He woke up in the hospital after being in a drug induced coma for over a month. What happened was probably the worst thing that can happen to anyone. The hospital waiting room was always full of 200 people or more, all in support of Javier and his family. As I sat there looking at Javiers’ new legs I just thought to myself, MY GOD this poor man and his family have been through hell. The whole experience was very traumatic for the whole family. Seeing a man that is normally athletic and independent be completely dependent was a harsh reality for them to cope with and for me to even begin to fathom. His wife Mayte has been a beacon of light and hope for all of us throughout their journey. Mayte has kept the public up to date through Javier’s Go Fund Me page. She occasionally provides updates on his advances, setbacks, struggles and successes. Staying connected every step of the way in his recovery has been a true blessing because it is a continuous reminder that LIFE IS TOO SHORT and that what we all need is to be more GRATEFUL.
Javier told me that the first thing he realized that made him take a more optimistic approach was his gratitude. Being able to see his children and still see them grow up is what he focuses on till this day. Taking on the mind set of “How can I get better”? As well as, setting short term goals and doing things little by little is how he has gotten through the toughest of days.
Javier will not lead the most common of lives moving forward. For starters Javier needs to replace his legs every 5 years at a cost of 130k. Unfortunately, costs like this are only partially covered by insurances. Or should I say barely? Javier, his family and supporters are hosting a yearly golf course where they will raise funds for Javier.
The event is taking place Saturday, March 16th at Miccosukee Golf and Country Club, at 6401 Kendale Lakes Drive, Miami , Florida 33183 at 1:00 pm. The event is being organized by family, friends, and colleagues in an effort to raise funds for Javi Perez’s medical and prosthetic expenses.
Online registration is open and will be open until March 9, 2019 at 12 noon. No on site registrations will be available.
Javi continues to attend weekly therapies and is focused on learning to walk again.
Join the efforts in giving back to a man who has given so much to his community and touched the lives of tens of thousands of students, colleagues, and athletes in Miami Dade County.
T-shirts and goody bag is guaranteed for those participants who register online before March 9, 2019.
Post Tournament Activities will include Raffles, Silent Auction, and award reception.
Special thanks to the following sponsors for their generous support: Herff Jones, WUP Productions, Norman Brothers, Mojo Donut, Latin House, Casa Cuevas, Sign305, Miccosukee Golf and Country Club.
REGISTER AND LEARN MORE: https://www.paypal.me/Javistrong
EVENT DETAILS ‐
What: 3rd Annual JAVISTRONG Golf Tournament
When: Saturday, March 16, 2019
Where: Miccosukee Golf and Country Club, 6401 Kendale Lakes Drive, Miami, Florida 33183
Time: 1:00 pm Tee Time
Event Day Registration begins at 11:30 am and lunch at 12:00 noon
Rosi Rosell Rodriguez
Editor in Chief