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There's a famous Abraham Lincoln quote about the amount of life one can pack into the years mattering more than the length of the life itself. The sentiment of the 16th president's thoughts has never rung truer than when remembering the years of Jason Horton, 27, who passed away Sunday after a long battle with cancer.

Horton was five-time member of the 科罗拉多急流 Special Olym图片s Team, dating back to the 2014 season. His trademark height and long strides were unmistakable on the pitch during his playing days, but it was his unwavering support and commitment to the team during times when wasn't able to play that were equally as impactful.

"Jason endured more than anyone should have to in his short life, but he didn’t view it like that. 他是个斗士, 他是快乐的, and he was the epitome of resilience," said friend and Rapids Senior Director of 社区 Relations, 凯特琳家族. "Being able to know Jason has changed my life and I know it has done so for many other 科罗拉多急流 staff, 球员和球迷. He will be missed."

Many first heard of Horton's incredible courage in 2016, when he was unable to make the Special Olym图片s Team trip to 盐湖 that August due to a battle with cancer. He was on the minds of his teammates and first team players that evening.

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Horton received an honorary ESPN ESPY award in 2017 and was a special guest at that year's 科罗拉多急流' A Burgundy Affair end of season banquet. In 2018, he was presented with the Athlete with Disabilities Award at the 2018 科罗拉多州 Sports Hall of Fame, meeting Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning in the process.

More than anything, Jason's view of the world seemed to resonate most with those who met him.

"I like to play with those who don't have disabilities," Horton said in a 2017 interview. "To let them know that we are not different, we are all the same."

In 2019, Horton again missed the Unified Team trip to 明尼苏达州 due to health complications and was diagnosed with Leukemia in 2020.

"Seeing him participate in Special Olym图片s has been something that's been a joy in my life just to see him break out and really persevere. I see how far he comes through his physical ability," Jason's sister-in-law, Nwando霍顿, said after he'd won the ESPY award.

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When the Unified Team resumed play in 2021, Horton was promoted to Assistant Coach where he served on the sideline during his final season. He would have celebrated his 28th birthday on Thursday.

"Jason will be remembered for being many things: a brother, 一个运动员, 一个音乐家, a die-hard 亚特兰大 fan, a friend and much more,亲属说:. "But above all, he will be remembered as an inspiration."

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