take drugs that suppressed her immune system, which weakened her and made her susceptible to illness. This past Valentine’s Day, Hutson died. She was 60.
Price, the oldest of eight children ranging in age from her youngest sister’s 8 to her own 41 years, handled the funeral and memorial plans with grace. But when it was all over, the depth of her loss began to set in. “Mommy was always there. We were so close. To not have that has really thrown me. I reach for the phone and realize she’s not there, and it hits me all over again.” But a deeper realization took hold of Price soon after her mother’s death, and it made her question the essence of who she was. “People always tell me I’m strong. They’ll say, ‘How do you do all of this? How do you keep it all together?’ I always felt like I was strong, like I was that person other people saw, but suddenly I felt like a fraud. I thought, ‘It’s not me, it’s her. It’s Mommy.’
“It’s not that I took her for granted while she was here, I just never realized how much she did to hold me up and get me through. I just keep reminding myself what she would say, what she would do, what she would want. And I’ve been praying a lot. She’d always remind me to pray and reassure me that God would not give me more than I could handle. That keeps me going.
“Somebody told me at the funeral that I should never feel sad thinking that my mother didn’t know how much I loved her because I showed her while she was alive. I honored her by naming something for her while she was here. I’ll never forget how I felt the first time I read the words Carol’s Daughter. It’s who I’ll always be, and those two words define me much more than I knew.”
MY HALL OF FAME WAKE-UP CALL
Michael Haynes Vice President of Player Development, the National Football League
Mike Haynes will never forget the moment that changed his life forever. In fact, he talks about it regularly, especially to the pro football players whose lives he seeks to change forever. It was 1976 and he was the New England Patriots’ number one draft choice out of Arizona State (ASU). His college team was undefeated in his senior year and had played in three Fiesta Bowls, and his stellar performance earned him a place in the College Football Hall of Fame. He dropped out of college in his senior year after the NFL made him that fabled offer he couldn’t refuse. “Once I got drafted, that was it,” says Haynes, a cornerback who was the first in his family to attend college. “I figured people went to college to get a good job and I had a great job.”
His pride only grew when he walked into the locker room his rookie year with the Patriots to find his locker next