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Sports Illustrated - Nov 2013 article on Jeff Lukas

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  • Sports Illustrated - Nov 2013 article on Jeff Lukas

    A somewhat rarity these days with an in-depth article that has a narrative worth following ...

    SI author Tim Layden: "Out of the Darkness" 20 -Years later

    The fact that Jeff is still alive after being run over by Tabasco Cat is remarkable in its own right.

  • #2
    Glimmerglass, Thank you, I never would have come across that article.

    I have wondered how things turned out for Jeff. What a powerful piece.
    I understand the author's confusion. I don't know how to feel after reading that .. but glad Jeff is happy.


    • #3
      For whatever reason the audio on this is messed up on my computer. I've tried this link from 3 different sources

      Anyway, I go through Atoka several times a year, and I always think of Jeff. It's usually on a weekend, and I'm pulling the trailer, or I'd be tempted to stop at the bank.
      "Everyone will start to cheer, when you put on your sailin shoes"-Lowell George


      • #4

        thanks. I didn't make it through the videos without a tear.


        • #5
          What a terrific, well-written article, full of all the ups and downs of Lukas' life. And the guy who has taken care of him all of these years!!! Wow, who has friends like that? And OMG, when he gave Stevens a leg up for the race, great.


          • #6
            I thought is was a brilliant article. Wile I have followed Jeff's story over the years, this article had me interested from start to finish. It made me stop and not take it for granted as i did chores this morning


            • #7
              I don't have time to read the article just now, but MY GOD, as it been 20 (!) years since the accident!? Holy crap. I can't believe it was so long ago!
              Thanks for the link. Will read when I get time.
              As Peter, Paul, and Mary say, a dragon lives forever.


              • #8
                There probably aren't many racetrackers, myself included who haven't done that exact same thing themselves. I guess it is the ultimate leap of faith that they will either stop or zig when you zag. Great article.
                McDowell Racing Stables

                Home Away From Home


                • #9
                  Excellent article. Thanks for the link.
                  If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket


                  • #10
                    Yes, thanks from me too, Glimmer. Great article. The content was fascinating, the format was interesting (look at what they can do with a computer that could not be done with paper print! I always preferred hard copy but this has me converted), and the story was really thought provoking.

                    I am left, like others, a little bemused by the question that is posed by this article: was this a tragedy or a blessing? I guess it was both. To live a long life, be happy and content, have your children turn out well, have your father still living (AND RIDING A HORSE AT EIGHTY), have loyal and generous friends who have your back... we should all be so lucky. Yet the years of pain and tribulation for all... I don't wish on anyone.

                    CrowneDragon, if you can find the time, do read the article, it's worth it.
                    "Random capitAlization really Makes my day." -- AndNirina


                    • Original Poster

                      After reading it I just had to share as it really hit me while reading it. I'm very happy that Tim was able to do this article in this multi-media format.

                      Yesterday I was trying to explain to someone this article and circumstances of Jeff's accident and its impact on his life (and others). Before I could get to where he is now the person said it was a terrible story and didn't understand why I would care to relay such a depressing event. Unquestionably nobody could say he is 'better off' because of it yet for such an accident the outcome seemingly has turned out as positive as someone could imagine.

                      This is no Disney story of full recovery and returning to where he left off better than ever and then accomplishing what he always wanted to.

                      Rather it is, if there is a silver lining, it restores faith in what one human can do for another. There is such a simple but very moving remark in the article:

                      People rushed ahead with their lives, and all of it was often just too hurried for [Jeff] Lukas. “In all of this,” [David] Burrage said, “there has to be a place for Jeff. And this is that place.”


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by PeteyPie View Post
                        CrowneDragon, if you can find the time, do read the article, it's worth it.
                        I did read it late last night. Fantastic. I had no idea Jeff wasn't still at the track, working in the shadows. I recall a brief TV interview with him, maybe at one of the Triple Crown races or the BC not all that long after his accident (I think it was the first time since the accident), showing that he was improving and getting back to life, and I had thought that he had resumed a more minor role working for his dad and was still there. I remember watching that interview and remember how "checked out" his eyes were when he talked; you could tell his brain was banged up.
                        I'm glad he's happy now.
                        As Peter, Paul, and Mary say, a dragon lives forever.


                        • #13
                          amazing article. I remember the accident but dont remember hearing anything in many years. Brain injuries are tough...I had a very close friend who lived for 15 years w/ an inoperable brain tumor. It created damage and caused seizures and dramatically changed her life and her personality. That outcome was very sad. So the fact that Jeff has made a life and be close to his kids and family, yes, its a good ending to the story. Kudos to him for all the work he had to do after the injury.
                          We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........


                          • #14
                            Glimmer, thamks for posting this. The writing is superb and the story, while sad, is uplifting for it's nod to human resilience. The "what ifs" are obvious, but all parties are in a good place, it would appear. Perhaps that would not be the case if life hadn't thrown a curve ball.