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Joshua Holsey Finds Inspiration Through His Father

Posted May 6, 2017

Josh Holsey was close to throwing in the towel after a second ACL injury while at Auburn, but found inspiration to push forward through the experience of his father.

Auburn cornerbak Josh Holsey hit a fork in the road after tearing his ACL for the second time. The situation undoubtedly required an operation, but both options came with risks. The easiest route would have been to leave the difficult rehabilitation and football behind, but Holsey’s father, Jonathan Holsey, had a similar experience before and knew his son had more to give.

“I’ve always told him do both surgeries, giving up is not an option” Jonathan said. “You have to find your strength within to get past this or get stronger after the situation."

On Nov. 4, 2004, Jonathan -- an Army Staff Sgt. -- was in Iraq when his convoy was hit by an IED. The accident left his leg severely injured and required amputation. Motivated by his children, the Purple Heart recipient knew he had to push forward.

“To them they wouldn’t really care how people looked at me, or how people viewed me, they were just happy I was still here,” Jonathan said. “They were that pushing factor to not give up. It wasn’t about just me. I couldn’t let them down.”

Just a child at the time, Josh watched his father’s long and painful recovery process of losing a limb and going from countless surgeries, to a prosthetic and then eventually running alongside his father in marathons.

Inspired by his father’s journey, Josh knew the decision he had to make. It was his turn to push forward.

“If he would have quit back then, then I probably would have had the urge to just quit now,” Josh told Redskins.com. “I would have had the urge to quit the first ACL, the second ACL. Adversity kind of brings out the best in somebody. You kind of know what’s in you when you’re at your lowest moment. I just know I have a lot of fight in me, a lot of courage in me, and I probably get that from him.”

Within a year after his injury, Josh was having the best year of his career selected as All-SEC third team after making 30 total tackles and three interceptions last season.

Holsey entered the NFL Draft at the end of the season and was selected in the seventh round by the Washington Redskins.

“You got to have determination and a passion about yourself to work on getting better and keep going and not to quit no matter what,” Josh said. “That kind of carried over with me when I had my two injuries and everything I go through. That mindset just carried over, you can’t quit you have to push through. The mindset is different over there so I think I inherited his mindset.”

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