clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Slausons are a Family Full of Inspiration

Rich Cimini has unearthed yet another inspiring story from the Slauson family. Rich has previously wrote about Matt Slauson's stuttering problem, how he refuses to let his condition get in the way of fulfilling what he wants to accomplish, even if it means post-game interviews are even more difficult than blocking Vince Wilfork. Now, I don't want to get on a soapbox or anything, but like Matt, I also have had to deal with a stutter my whole life, so I understand what he has gone through. Yes, I have been secretly pulling for Matt to win the job. Call me bias.

Anyway, Rich has dug further into the Slauson family, where in any ordinary household, Matt's accomplishments would be at the forefront. Matt's brother, Nick, however, is the fountain from which Matt draws his inspiration. Read on as

On Oct. 3, 1981, Nancy Slauson gave birth to identical twins, Chris and Nick. Chris would go on to become a rocket scientist (quite literally), earning a degree in astronautical engineering from the Air Force Academy. He's an Air Force captain, a C-17 jet pilot who has flown three tours in the Middle East.

Nick suffered a prenatal brain injury. His oxygen was cut off, the placenta calcified and his brain was underdeveloped. One womb, two dramatically different outcomes. But are they really that different?

Nick has gone on to achieve things no one else though he could, including his own teachers and doctors. Read the article for more details:

Nick overachieved in everything, not just swimming. His teachers said he'd never be able to get a driver's license. Undaunted, he passed the test for a learner's permit. That's awesome, his parents told him.

Three months later, Nick came home with his license, taking the driving test without telling his parents.

Awesome, they said again, never wanting to discourage him.

Naturally, they figured the whole driving thing would end there, but Nick bought a used car on his own and started tooling around town. Currently, he's driving for a moving company in Lincoln.

Watching Nick deal with his difficulties has allowed Matt to set aside his own setbacks and to always strive for success. Success doesn't not always mean success on the field for Matt, but going through daily life with a constant reminder of you're own deficiencies every time speaking is involved is a success in itself.

At times, it's difficult for Slauson. Always has been. Even though he was always the biggest kid in school, he was teased because of his stuttering. His grandfather also stuttered, but he became a judge and it never was an issue once he put on his robes and stepped into a courtroom. Likewise, Slauson doesn't struggle around teammates, but it surfaces in unfamiliar settings, such as when he's talking to the media.

"There are days when it's tough," he said. "It's been real frustrating. Sometimes I can't even say anything, stumbling and stammering. It just sucks. But I look at my brother and see what he has to deal with every day, and how successful he is. He doesn't even worry about it. I'm not going to hide it. I just go about my business and be like him."

Maybe there's a reason for Slauson's mean, nasty attitude on the field that the coaching staff has grown to enjoy. One thing is for sure; the Slauson's aren't going to let anything hinder them from fulfilling their potential.