Richard T.

Haselwood Family YMCA


Richard spent most of his career as a long-haul trucker. He was 32 years old, 405 pounds, and denied a bypass surgery because of his size. With a goal to join the military, he knew he needed to make a change, so he joined the Y.

“What began as two days a week became five and six days,” said Richard. “I got stronger and faster, and felt better than I had in years.”

After years of hard work and better self-care, Richard returned to the same military recruitment office where he was once told he’d never meet weight requirements. He failed the fitness test three times but his persistence finally resulted in a passed physical and enlistment into the United States Navy at the age of 35.

“Even though this is just the beginning of my new career, it has been a long journey for me, and there is no way I could have reached this goal without the Y,” said Richard. “I am honored to serve my country and make my family, my son, and my friends at the Y proud.”