Andy Fass entered a Yankee Stadium suite Wednesday morning to a sea of family, friends, Yankee players and reporters. He could have reacted like any 5-year-old. He could have been shy, overwhelmed, shocked or hysteric.

But that's not how the face of albinism inspiration rolls.

Andy, who suffers from oculocutaneous albinism, embraced his welcome party. The Hamilton, N.J., native hugged family and friends, high-fived Yankees players CC Sabathia, Phil Hughes and Clay Rapada and opened gifts from the organization. When the media brigade cornered Andy, he did not stress. Instead, he held his own press conference and even grabbed a hold of a few TV microphones.

It would have been tough for an outsider to guess Andy lives a challenged lifestyle. His albinism, which is genetic, has left him legally blind, without pigment in the skin and unable to spend extended periods of time in the sun.

Andy was honored on the third day of the Yankees' HOPE Week (Helping Others Persevere & Excel) when the organization reaches out to a different individual, family or organization worthy of recognition and support. All players, coaches, front office staff and minor league affiliates contribute in at least some way to the week. The Yankees honored Fass and NOAH (The National Organization for Albinism and Hypopigmentation) to raise albinism awareness.

The team would not have known about Andy had it not been for a chance encounter with another Andy.

The story starts back in mid-April. Andy's sister, Katie, was going to be honored at a Trenton Thunder game for an academic award, and the Fass family had three games to choose from. They chose to attend a Wednesday night game on April 25.

A problem soon developed. Shortly before game day, the Yankees announced Andy Pettitte would be making a rehab start at Trenton on April 25. When Andy's father Marc went to buy tickets the day before the game, his only option was standing-room only.

Knowing it would be tough for Andy to stay focused on a game standing the entire time, Marc opted to buy only two tickets for his daughter and himself.

Then things started to go the Fass' way. Well, after Marc took action.

"While I'm not proud of this, I went home and posted on Facebook a disparaging comment about Andy Pettitte," Marc said. "It was something to the effect of 'thanks for ruining a great family night, Andy Pettitte.' Well, that kind of started the wheel spinning. Friends of ours said they had season tickets to the Thunder, and they said even though they had given the tickets away, they might be able to get them back for us."

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Simon Wheatcroft has been blind for more than a decade, but that didn't stop him from doing something most people can only dream of--carrying the Olympic torch.

Wheatcroft, a prolific runner, carried the torch in England on Tuesday with the help of the iPhone app RunKeeper. Essentially an audio GPS system, RunKeeper lets Wheatcroft keep track of his distance and location. It has allowed Wheatcroft, who is legally blind, to run alone on open roads, as demonstrated in his Asics ad below.

"With boredom as a driving force, one day I just decided to step out onto the road and run," Wheatcroft writes in Wired. "Feeling the camber underfoot and pairing that with distance markers from my phone, I ran the roads for the first time. Proving the concept, I spent the next few months practicing this technique through running into posts and obstacles and remembering where they were so I didn’t do it again! After a few months I had it perfected, and I was running alone."

Amazing. For an interview with the man himself, see here.

-- Follow Robbie Levin on Twitter @RobbieLevin.

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Pulitzer Prize-winning sports columnist Jim Murray famously wrote that Little League baseball is "a juvenile activity that makes delinquents out of adults," but that was no issue this season for a team in Southern California.

In the town of San Clemente, a team of 12- to 14-year-olds couldn't find any adults to be its coach. So two freshmen from the local high school, who could easily pass as members of the team, decided to volunteer for the job.

And as reported in The Orange County Register, the team went on to have a storybook season. It lost the first two games of the season, gradually improved and then capped the season by winning the district championship.

The coaches are Chris Puckett, 15, and Cameron Shelley, 14. Some players on the team are taller than Shelley, who stands at 5 feet.

"They still listen," Shelley told the Register. "None of them seem to goof off. They still respect me."

Brad Christian, whose son Max is the team's catcher, vouched for the coaches' skills, telling the Register: "My kid is playing the best baseball he ever has played. I was probably the biggest skeptic, the most vocal about 'I don't want my kid to be on this team.' (Now) I can't say enough good things about them. I think they are the best coaches my kid has ever had."

The team needed special permission from the league to allow Puckett and Shelley to be the coaches. The successful season helped Puckett make the point that "kids can coach if they know the game."

"I knew that me and Cameron could coach them up to a pretty high level of baseball," he told the Register, "even if we couldn't start off very good. The result speaks for itself."

-- For more photos of the team, check out this Orange County Register gallery.

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As Casey Tibbs lay on the road, staring into the sky wondering, the last thing on his mind was that rabbit.

Will girls ever like me? Will I be in a wheelchair for the rest of my life?

The Navy man with such promise and resolve was torn. His right foot rested one hundred yards up the asphalt. It was severed instantly by a guardrail when loose gravel caused Tibbs to lose control of his motorcycle. On that March day, eleven years ago, his grandfather's words weren't with him.

Never quit chasing the rabbit.

"As a kid, I got tired of hearing that story," Tibbs admits. "But now any time I have adversity either before a competition or I have to leave my wife and kids for deployment, I have my grandfather's voice in the back of my head."

The parable involves a coyote who can only eat jack rabbits to live. The moral is never give up. And with his grandparents by his side at the hospital, it's something Tibbs decided to make his motto.

"I knew I was going to be a paralympian," he says matter-of-factly.

Three years after the accident, Tibbs became the first American active-duty military member to compete in the Paralympic Games. He took home two medals from Athens, including gold in the 4x100m relay. Four years later, he would repeat the accomplishment in Beijing. Now Tibbs has teamed up with Kelloggs as he heads to London to attempt the three-peat.

"I don't feel as much pressure as I felt in '08," he says. "People were expecting me to do well in '08 after surprising everyone in '04, so that was huge. I kind of have a more cool, calm approach to these games."

Tibbs has already been to London. He went last September for a kickoff event in Trafalgar Square and expects these Paralympic Games to be the biggest and best yet. He won't be distracted by the sights, nor sidetracked by the fervor. His goals remain unchanged.

"I'd be lying if I said I was okay coming home without a gold medal."

There goes the rabbit.

-- Follow Adam Watson on Twitter @AdamKWatson.

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