University News

WIU Student Pens Motivational Book with Stepbrother

June 28, 2013

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MACOMB, IL - Western Illinois University senior Garrick Hodge is partnering with his stepbrother, X Games adaptive snocross bronze medalist Garrett Goodwin, for a new book about perseverance.

Hodge, of Winthrop Harbor, IL, is helping with Goodwin's autobiography, "Beating X-Treme Odds," which is scheduled for a mid-December release.

Goodwin suffered a spinal cord injury during a July 2011 motocross race, which left him paralyzed from the waist down. Despite doctors telling Goodwin that he would never walk again, he refused to let it stop his dream of competing in the X Games.

It took Goodwin about 18 months of rehabilitation to complete his rehabilitation and redesign his snowmobile seat to reach his goal.

Throughout the book, Goodwin and Hodge talk about the accident and the rehabilitation process.

"It's an incredible honor and blessing to be able to tell the story of an incredible human being who is not only my best friend, but also a brother to me," Hodge said. "The hardships that Garrett faced and overcame in his journey to the X Games are unimaginable, but yet he refused to make excuses or allow anything to stop him from reaching his dream. I'm co-writing 'Beating X-Treme Odds' because I want the nation to know Garrett's story. I am confident that by releasing this book he will become a role model for all ages to never give up on their dream no matter how impossible it might seem."

Hodge is currently finishing his broadcasting degree at Western, as well as his journalism minor. He has won four Illinois College Press Association awards and is the managing editor for The Western Courier campus newspaper.

Goodwin is studying mechanical engineering at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, MI. He is also in the process of starting a foundation for disabled athletes and is training for future X Games competition.

Someday Goodwin hopes to mass-produce the snowmobile seat that he designed along with his sponsors.

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