The book for the month of June hits close to home for James. Charlie’s Victory is an autobiography of his high school football coach! This book overflows with Charlie slogan, “I live to give others hope.” Charlie Wedemeyer was an incredible football player from Hawaii who ended up playing at Michigan State. After his college career, he became a high school football coach in California. In the 80’s Charlie Wedemeyer was diagnosed with ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Meaning the nerve cells that controlled all his muscles were slowing dying. The life expectancy of ALS patients is around three years, the doctors gave Charlie one year to live, but that never stopped him.

Charlie never let ALS take over his life and he, along with his wife Lucy, decided to make the most of it. Even with the terminal illness slowing taking over he continued to coach and live life to the fullest. At the age of 40, Charlie coached his last football game at Los Gatos High School. At that point, years after the diagnoses, Charlie could no longer walk, so Lucy drove him in a golf cart; he could no longer talk. so Lucy read his lips and shared with the players. When he eventually had to go on life support, his team took the California’s Central Coast Championship. 

“Death is but the conclusion. It doesn’t really matter when or how it comes. What counts is the living we squeeze in until then.”

Charlie lived a full life and traveled the world as a motivational and inspirational speaker, the majority of the time with Lucy reading his lips. There have been movies and documentaries sharing their story. This book continues those stories from their perspective. It redefines marriage and commitment and shows hope. This is a story directly from Charlie and Lucy that shows how committed they were to embrace the challenges that came their way.