When I was a high school, “Doctor K” captured my imagination. When I was in college, his fall from grace shattered that memory, but his willingness to accept responsibility and subsequent years of sobriety allowed me to trust him again. Then came his exile. I felt little except sadness for wasted talent.
I watched him time and again try to recapture his once-unlimited potential, and his magical night in 1996 should have been ther moment where his life changed. It didn’t.
Later on, I met Dwight Gooden. A courteous and warm man shook my hand, and we chatted about our kids and mutual acquaintences. It is that man — and his family — that I pray for tonight. The 19-year old with the classic motion and lightning in his right-arm left us a long time ago. It is the man that remains.
No matter how angry, disappointed or apathetic you might be about “Doc” right now, it is Dwight Gooden, an ordinary man with very real problems, whose life and whose family’s future is at stake here. Try to remember that when your first instinct is to judge, condemn or joke.
When I heard what happened on Tuesday morning, I thought about the man. Maybe you could too.