Troy man running the race of life and loving it
TROY, Ala. (WSFA) - If you want to keep up with almost 84-year-old Luther Messick, you better be moving. He’s usually in the lead. His son calls his dad a freak who loves to compete.
“Yes, sir,” said Troy resident Luther Messick. “I’ve always been, and I still do.”
His trophy room shows off trophies, medals, ribbons, and more earned over the last 60 years. But it’s something he never even dreamed of as a little boy.
“In fifth grade, I had to quit school because I couldn’t keep up in the field plowing mules.”
Playing sports wasn’t even an option.
“I never had a ball glove, a bicycle, or anything.”
Messick joined the military at 17, and in his late 20s, he returned home to Pike County. He joined the Troy Track Club and has been running ever since.
“Every town you can think of around here that has a race, I’ve been in it.”
Soon, running turned into marathons, triathlons, and bike racing. One day his son wanted to go watch a canoe race. You know where this is going.
“I knew somebody at Troy University that would rent canoes. So I said why don’t we get in the water with them. We’ll have more fun.”
Big surprise Luther and Ken took home first place.
“The most important trophies to me are the ones we won together.”
He’s a man who’s seen a lot of roads and a lot of race. His secret to success, “I talk to the Good Lord before I run. I’m not asking the Good Lord to help me win, just help me do the best I can.”
His best is pretty darn good. He competed in the Senior Olympics five times. Now that his racing career is over, this room is a special place.
“I look at these trophies and read what’s on them. It brings back a lot of memories.”
As many trophies as he has, he’s made a whole lot more friends along the way.
“Life is just good. I don’t know where to put one part in front of another.”
A positive outlook and a passion to compete, Luther Messick is always out in front. Even though his racing days are over, he says he still does 25 pushups and walks 2-3 miles every day.
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