Ben Affleck was in the right place at the right time, representing the right city, at the 2013 ESPYs.
At Wednesday's sports-award event, the Oscar-winning director of "Argo" and co-writer (with close pal Matt Damon) of "Good Will Hunting" saluted the area where he was raised. He noted that most people are asked at some point, "Where are you from?" He then added, "I'm extremely proud of my answer: Boston."
As footage of April's Boston Marathon bombing and its immediate aftermath then was shown, Affleck said in his narration, "The spirit of a city isn't found among buildings. It's found in the people who claim the city as their own."
He then introduced two such people, the recipients of this year's Jimmy V Perseverance Award, named for the late college basketball coach Jim Valvano. Dick and Rick Hoyt are father-and-son runners who have been longtime regulars in the marathon, with Dick pushing the wheelchair of cerebral-palsy-afflicted Rick for the length of the course.
After the filmed package about them, the Hoyts took the stage at Los Angeles' Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE to a sustained ovation -- with Dick stating, "I don't think you could find two guys more proud to represent Boston." Rick confirmed that, using his voice box to echo one of Valvano's mantras, "Don't give up ... don't ever give up."
Dick also advocated for compassion for "those who may walk or talk a little different," with Affleck closing the segment by giving both Hoyts warm embraces: several Bostonians, gathered in tribute to the city that nurtured them, and the city they clearly love.
Photo/Video credit: Getty Images
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