SPORTS PEOPLE; A Soccer Tale
The Cleveland Crunch of the Major Indoor Soccer League has signed its No. 1 draft choice, Simon Keith of the University of Las Vegas, but that’s only half the story. Keith has been living the last three years with a transplanted heart.
Keith received the heart from an English soccer player who had died of a blood clot on his brain while playing. Keith’s own heart was damaged by viral myocarditis, a weakening of the heart muscle.
”He is a unique individual and I’m happy to have us be a part of his story,” said Al Miller, the Crunch president and general manager. ”Simon is the rare combination, outstanding soccer player and outstanding human being.”(AP)
The Cleveland Crunch wanted to draft Simon Keith, but first there were a couple of questions the newest team in the Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL) wanted to ask him. So at a luncheon the day before the college soccer all-star game, in Wichita, Kans., last July 7, Al Miller, the Crunch’s general manager, introduced himself to Keith, a 24-year-old forward from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Then Miller backed into the questions: “The word is that you had some kind of heart problem.”
“Yeah,” Keith said.
“What was it?” asked Miller.
“Uh, now what exactly does that mean, Simon?”
Keith pointed to his chest and said…
Simon Keith dominates Bud Showcase
Three years ago, Simon Keith was dying of heart disease at age 21. Then he got a heart transplant. Now he’s a pro soccer team’s top draft choice.
American Journal of Athletic Training