From The Chosun Ilbo
The half-Korean American football star Hines Ward on Monday expressed hope that other mixed-race children will forget neither their dreams for the future nor their pride in their Korean heritage. The Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver, who was designated “most valuable player” at the Super Bowl in February, made the remark on arrival for his first visit to the country of his birth after 29 years.
Ward arrived at Incheon International Airport at 4:55 p.m. aboard a Korean Air flight from Atlanta, Georgia and was welcomed by a huge crowd of well-wishers. The athlete said he was fulfilling the promise he made his mother Kim Young-hee to bring her to Korea once he had achieved success. "Dreams come true,” he said.
During their flight across the Pacific, Ward said he and his mother talked about her birthplace and his birth here. He said he chose to leave his wife and son behind so he and his mother could devote their time to each other during the trip.
Ward has a jam-packed schedule ahead for the next 10 days. He will have dinner with President Roh Moo-hyun and the first lady in Cheong Wa Dae on Tuesday and be given honorary citizenship of Seoul at City Hall on Wednesday. On Thursday, he is scheduled to visit Ewha Womans University Medical Center, where he was born.
Having been a keen baseball player in his high school days, Ward will throw the first ball in the opening game between the Doosan and LG professional baseball teams at Jamsil Stadium on Saturday.
Related article: Hines Ward is Korea's Valentine
So basically Hines Ward is the biggest hero there - despite the fact that Korea traditionally discriminates against mixed race, which is why his mother moved to the United States to raise him. As I said in my previous article, this is an astounding humanitarian effort by raising awareness in a foreign country about people with mixed race, as Hines has not only been accepted by the Mother country, but he has even been EMBRACED because he is a mixed race? It is so ironic yet at the same time really really cool.
What an awesome guy! And an amazing role model. And so very easy on the eyes ;)