With kids all over the country back in school, it’s time for the Fall sports line up. For 8th grader Amelia Malburg, that means Cross Country. The middle schooler attends Mason County Eastern, where she’s usually leading the pack of her teammates at their cross country meets. But last week, Amelia – or Mia, as her friends call her – didn’t cross the finish line first. Instead, she sacrificed her running time in a genuine display of compassion and sportsmanship that her teammates, and her school, are incredibly proud of.
As Mia was running the sunny track last Thursday, she happened upon one of her teammates who was struggling. In fact, 7th grader Alexis Shubert was panting on the ground as she struggled to stand. “We were almost close to done, we were getting up the big hill,” Mia told a local news station. “[Alexis] fell down, she didn’t want to move forward because it was so hot and [she] has asthma.”
Mia didn’t hesitate to run straight to her struggling teammate. She knew that her teammate’s asthma and the blistering heat were becoming too much for Alexis. So, in a shining display of comradery and compassion, Mia picked up Alexis and propelled her forward. “I just wanted to sit there and just lay down and just stop,” said Alexis. “Then Amelia came by, and she helped me up and walked me up the hill, and we started running together.”
Mia’s mother, Ginger, wasn’t surprised at all by her daughter’s generosity. “It was just something that I kind of expected Mia to do. She doesn’t like it when other people are hurt around her.” Though Mia is just in middle school, it can be hard at any age to make a sacrifice for the sake of another person. Mason County residents are proud of Mia’s actions, and hope that her example of good sportsmanship and sacrificial kindness go viral.