Swinging to Success

1 decade 2 years 5 months ago Sunday, February 25 2007 Feb 25, 2007 Sunday, February 25, 2007 10:07:07 PM CST February 25, 2007 in Sports

You've heard athletes talking about digging deep to find their motivation. To a Columbia athlete dig means much more. Determination, imagination, and grit. This is the recipe John Covington uses to find success on his life's course.

John Covington is back at Rock Bridge Elementary which is where he used to go to school. He learned a lot of lessons and taught a few of his own.

"He would always correct me and say 'I don't want extra turns. I want to be like everybody else. I want to do it just like they do, so don't treat me special'," said Covington's former P.E. teacher Cara Ross.

"You can't have any pity for yourself and if I would have tried to get second chances I would have looked at myself as a handicapped kid," said Columbia golfer John Covington.

Since the day he was born with a radial club left hand, a condition that left him with a short left arm, John hasn't let anything hold him back. Including a love for sports.

"I think from an early age he was determined to do more than people could tell him he could do," said Ross.

But you can't see all of his obstacles. An athlete like John has something special in his heart.

"He has a double outlet right ventricle. At that time, 24 years ago, no one around here could do surgery," said John's mother Becky Covington.

"Everyone's got a challenge. For some it might be reading. I think that's what I look at my heart as being," remarked John Covington.

So the Covington's went to the Mayo clinic. John had open heart surgeries when he was one and five.

"When I walked him to the operating room for his five year old open heart surgery. He hugged me and said,'Don't worry, Mom. I'll be okay'," remembered Becky Covington.

Okay enough to make the Rock Bridge high school baseball and golf teams. For the past 7 years he managed a golf course in Edwardsville, Illinois, and now he is taking his golf skills national. John starts playing on a tour in March.

"Can you believe it? He's good, too! Very good," said Becky Covington.

In John's golf game, he sees the short left arm as giving him an upper hand.

"Imagine having your left arm tied behind your back your whole life. Think of the muscles that would develop. This whole right side. It's big and it's strong, and it's always been able to compensate for the left," stated John Covington.

"You have to believe you can do something before your body will follow through," said John's mother.

Covington is now teaching others about believing in themselves and beating adversity. He's starting a foundation called DIG.

"I just thought D.I.G is great. Determination, imagination, grit. I mean what else do you need. You can do anything with those three," said Covington.

University Hospital is sponsoring Covington in his first Hooters tour event in mid-March. John is going to play in Orlando, Florida with his dad as the caddie. Last year Covington won the University Hospital's Hope and Spirit award for a patient who demonstrates perseverance and courage.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Mall will become home to a second Dillard’s and to a hotel, pending approval by... More >>
52 minutes ago Saturday, August 17 2019 Aug 17, 2019 Saturday, August 17, 2019 8:38:00 PM CDT August 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Vendors and shoppers met Saturday Aug. 17 to exchange items at Columbia Flea Swap. The flea market... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, August 17 2019 Aug 17, 2019 Saturday, August 17, 2019 3:51:00 PM CDT August 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - No one was hurt when house caught fire Saturday morning. Firefighters responded to a home at the... More >>
6 hours ago Saturday, August 17 2019 Aug 17, 2019 Saturday, August 17, 2019 3:17:00 PM CDT August 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — Maries County deputies asked the public for help identifying two people who broke into a church and stole... More >>
23 hours ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 9:45:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Cars 4 Kids event scheduled for Saturday has been postponed due to rain in the forecast. Organizers... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 6:04:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Over 50 cats and dogs will be available for adoption at the Central Missouri Humane Society for a... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 5:47:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - One Columbia mother said a school bus driver let her son get off the bus more than a... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 4:41:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A U.S. District Judge ruled against State Rep. Cheri Toalson Reisch, R-Hallsville, in a lawsuit about her... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 4:24:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A preliminary autopsy performed on Friday could not determine the gender or age of the infant remains found... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 3:46:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A series of earthquakes shook parts of Kansas on Friday morning near Hutchinson, knocking... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 3:38:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The City of Columbia apologized after a community relations worker took a selfie at a crime scene. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 2:21:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
VIENNA - A relief fund has been established for six firefighters injured Friday fighting a fire turned explosion at a... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 12:34:00 PM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - MoDOT is teaming up with a major player in the ride-share industry as part of this year's 'Drive... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 16 2019 Aug 16, 2019 Friday, August 16, 2019 3:14:00 AM CDT August 16, 2019 in News
SEDALIA – Governor Mike Parson told reporters Thursday he is considering a special session. The session would involve tax... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 9:14:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
HALLSVILLE - Local businesses, churches, and families painted the town purple and gold to welcome students back on their first... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 7:56:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
JACKSON COUNTY - Authorities have identified the body recovered from Blind Pony Lake earlier this week as Jackson County resident... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 4:50:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Police have identified a body found in north Columbia Thursday as an infant less than one year old.... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 3:16:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - As students start at or return to school, enrollment at Columbia Public schools continues to rise. The... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, August 15 2019 Aug 15, 2019 Thursday, August 15, 2019 1:19:00 PM CDT August 15, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 79°
10pm 81°
11pm 80°
12am 79°
1am 79°