Former Umpire and Gunshot Survivor
Major League Baseball Umpire Steve Palermo was living his dream. But on a hot summer Dallas night, the dream turned into a nightmare.
Today, he tells his riveting story which conveys inspiration, motivation, perseverance, heartbreak, humor and love. In his story, he also integrates anecdotes and intrigue about baseball, the game that remains dear to him.
The year was 1991. Palermo began his 15th year in the big leagues. He had already established himself as the best in baseball and just prior to spring training wed the love of his life, Debbie Aaron. But all that provided minimal consolation that July night after a mugger's bullet struck his spinal cord, leaving him in a life-threatening situation. This all happened simply because he reacted quickly, just like an umpire, as he came to the aid of two restaurant waitresses being robbed. It was a random act of violence.
Now, a partially paralyzed Palermo reflects, saying, “sometimes, life's journey takes unexpected turns.” He has no animosity or remorse. He doesn't feel sorrow for himself. His life is good and he still works in the game he loves, albeit, not on the field. And because of his experiences and good fortune, he wants to tell others. Much like he helped the waitresses, he knows his message and story can benefit many, including those with disabilities, their families and others with life challenges.
“We all have it in us to push ourselves to overcome adversity,” he says today. “But fortunately many never have to push that button.”
This is a “must hear” story. It's captivating and courageous. It delivers an important life message, believing that you can achieve the impossible.
His talk is engaging, personable and can be tailored toward your corporate or special event needs, whether it's sales-driven, “feel-good,” or baseball-related.