About Us

 

 

 

 

How it started

Team Hoyt Arizona takes its name from the legendary father-son team of Dick and Rick Hoyt.

It honors us that Dick and Rick Hoyt granted us permission to use their name for our charity.  We are only one of seven Team Hoyt organizations in the world.

Rick Hoyt

Rick Hoyt was born in Holland, MA in 1962. He was diagnosed spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy.

Doctors advised his parents, Dick and Judy Hoyt, to institutionalize him because there was no chance of recovery and little hope for Rick to lead a normal life.

This began the parents’ journey to include Rick in the community, education, sports and the workplace.

Antique photo of Rick Hoyt being pushed by his father Dick Hoyt in an old racing wheelchair. He has a big smile! Photo courtesy of Team Hoyt, TeamHoyt.com

Rick and Dick Hoyt. Photo courtesy of Team Hoyt, TeamHoyt.com

When Rick was 15, he told his father that he wanted to join in a five-mile benefit run for a classmate that had been paralyzed in an accident. Though he’d never competed in running events, Dick Hoyt agreed to push Rick in the race in his wheelchair.

They finished second to last in the race, but Rick told his father that when he was running, it felt like his disability disappeared. And so the original Team Hoyt was born.

Since then, they have competed in hundreds of events together, including 31 Boston Marathons and six Ironman triathlons! The Hoyts’ example inspired other parents with children with disabilities to form their own teams and start competing in athletic events.

Team Lucas

Lucas King, the son of Steve and Denise King, was born in Tucson in 2007. Steve and Denise were very excited to bring Lucas into the world, and made a lot of plans together for his future.

Life is not simple for Lucas, and he was born with cerebral palsy. None of us can imagine how that changed Steve’s and Denise’s lives unless we’ve been through it as parents.

At ten years old, Lucas is strong and his family is joyful. To hear them talk about it today inspires courage, happiness, and self-reflection. They’ve moved beyond Lucas’ disabilities to live an amazing life together with him.

Lucas smiling with his dad, Steve, and his mom, Denise.

Steve, Denise, and Lucas King. Photo courtesy of News 4 Tucson, kvoa.com

Steve and Denise know that Lucas deserves many experiences that are not available to him. There are never enough accessible options for people with special needs. They need to make extra effort to make sure people include Lucas.

Lucas’ parents are both athletes, and Lucas loves participating in sports. Basketball, football, baseball, running, cycling – he loves it all! The rougher, the better!

When Lucas was little, Steve would run with Lucas in the stroller. Lucas loved it, and when they hit bumps he would crack up laughing. They became very involved in the wheelchair athletics community.

Steve and Denise had an inspiring story with a powerful message. “Why can’t Lucas take part in this activity?” They became nonprofit activists and devoted enormous energy to community inclusion.

Steve and Denise began rallying other volunteers behind the cause of inclusion. They were inspiring people to action. It was time to get organized!

 

Founding Team Hoyt Arizona

A new nonprofit organization with its own all-inclusive community was emerging. The Kings had become friends with their heroes Rick and Dick Hoyt. When they spoke about their organization with them, Mr. Hoyt offered the use of his name. This was a true honor for our organization because of what he and Rick had started.

Steve and Denise put together a Board of Directors and in March, 2016 founded Team Hoyt Arizona. The IRS determined our 501 (c) (3) nonprofit to be a qualified public charity and granted us tax exempt status.

We’ve already rocked races in Arizona, California, and Massachusetts! Our calendar will update soon for next year’s packed season.

Lucas and his family hanging out with Dick Hoyt.

 

Our Message

Team Hoyt Arizona wants to say...

Yes You Can!

You can do it. We want to see you cross the finish line. You’ve got what it takes!

 

Take the challenge now:

1.

If you want to complete a race event with a team’s help (buddy running and/or wheelchair riding), let us help you do it.

Join for free

2.

If you can help push our athletes and fundraise our team to the finish line, then we need your help!

Volunteer

3.

If you value inclusion please donate to our nonprofit organization.

Donate

 

We’ll see you out there!