SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – Buddy Mack is good, fast, and in demand.
The Byrnes High School safety is a South Carolina All- Star and is the kind of player coveted by big-time college programs.
Next Fall, he’ll line for the Pitt Panthers in the ACC. But for all he’s accomplished so far, Buddy’s always felt he needed to catch up to the athletic exploits of his sister.
“It made me work harder because she was getting lots of accolades from my parents,” he said. “She became the most favorite athlete in the house, I wanted to outshine her towards my parents.”
Tierra Mack is a few years older and always had talent. She ran high school track in the 7th grade. In 8th grade, she ran the 400 hurdles and finished 6th in the state.
“I was the best athlete until I graduated… I let him get the torch,” she said.
What’s truly amazing about Tierra Mack is that she was able to walk at all.
Born with club feet, she spent much of her young life with both legs in a cast.
When other toddlers were walking, Tierra’s parents carried her.
It was the doctors at Shriner’s Hospital who fixed her feet, and gave her wings.
“I went back again and again for 15 years I believe,” she said “I would come and they would like x-ray my legs I think every time I went, do exercises with them.”
Now that Tierra’s graduated and passed the torch, it’s her brother returning the favor and some compassion.
The South Carolina All- Star will play in the Shrine Bowl, but more importantly he’s giving his time and his talent to the new generation of miracles.
“Him giving back, I’m just as proud of that as him scoring a touchdown,” Buddy’s father Thomas Mack said.
Buddy says it’s special to him knowing that his sister was one of the patients and to be selected in the game is amazing.
This weekend, the Shrine Bowl will showcase the best high school football talent in both Carolinas.
But the lives they inspire may be the most talented yet.