Henry Suttie is a remarkable story of perseverance. A 3 sport athlete Henry played football, swimming, and baseball. Coach Tom Lee mentioned that having Henry in his AP US History class made him realize he had to be an excellent teacher every day. Henry was going to come prepared each day, bring enthusiasm, and curiosity because he wanted to get better. In 7th grade Henry was diagnosed with malalignment syndrome. Doctors discovered that his femur and tibia were rotating outward. As an 8th grader, the doctors broke those 2 bones in each of his legs. As he began playing football at Aquinas he was literally relearning how to balance and run again. As a junior Henry became a rotational player in the defensive line. Henry eventually became a starter and was named 2nd team All Conference DL. Henry was injured in practice during week 8 but was able to return 4 weeks later during the Aquinas playoff run and recovered a fumble that led to the Aquinas State Championship winning drive.
In his essay, Henry reflected on his football journey. “I had my surgeries in the spring of 7th grade and in the fall of 8th grade. Life was pretty difficult for me at the time. Recovery was not only physical but mental.To say I wasn’t very good my freshmen year is an understatement. I had to relearn how to run again. My strength wasn’t there and my flexibility wasn’t great. I slowly started to improve. I stayed patient, hoping my time would come. Junior year we won State and though I did not play at State I was overjoyed. During my senior year our team visited a 4 year old who had been involved in a serious accident that left him in bad shape. Seeing his face light up when we saw him was awesome. My troubles were small compared to his but I saw some of myself in him. Life isn’t always easy, but there is nothing better than bringing hope to those that need it. If you had told me in middle schoolI would be playing and winning state titles, I’d have thought you were lying. High school football meant so much to me and I’d do anything to go back and do it all again.”
Henry plans to go to Loras College, play football, and study Engineering.