Losing a loved one is a tragedy we all deal with at some point in our lives. We never want to experience this or accept it. But, if we find a way to face reality and move on, it can make us stronger. This is the case with Dan Holt, a walk-on with the University of North Texas football team.
In 2005, Dan’s father, Tim, lost a battle with brain cancer at age 49. Dan was attending McKinney North high school at the time playing offensive line for the football team. After graduating, he began his college career at Midwestern State then transferred to North Texas.
Holt talked about several things including how his experience at North Texas has been so far.
“It’s been amazing. The coaches and players have been like family,” said Holt. “It’s an awesome opportunity and I’m thankful for them giving it to me. It’s been a blessing.”
Dan explained why he chose North Texas.
“It’s close to home and makes it easier for my mom to come see me. This is a program I felt like I could compete at. There’s a nice atmosphere here and I feel close to everyone. It’s like family.”
He also discussed what it’s like being part of the football team.
“The coaches really stress the fundamentals and teach you how to carry yourself like a champion. It’s great to be part of a team that respects each other, the media, and the community.”
Besides his parents, Dan’s coaches have had a significant impact on his life.
“They’ve been like father figures, being there for me and helping me grow. I really enjoy their coaching and what I have learned.”
Other than playing football, Dan had some aspirations of what else he could do in life.
“I actually wouldn’t mind practicing medicine because of what happened with my father. It would be interesting to study neurology.”
Without hesitation, Dan expressed how he had changed in the last three years since his father’s death.
“I’ve matured a lot and learned more about life. This has made me grow as a person.”
Over the past few years, playing football has been a way for Holt to enjoy life and is the type of person we all should try to be like.
Dan remains close to his mother, Suzanne, and the rest of his family to this day.