MESA, Ariz. - It was a special day at Sloan Park, the spring training home of the World Champion Chicago Cubs on Tuesday. The team, and the Salt River Project, honored a young man who has overcome incredible obstacles to achieve success and saved a woman's life in the process.
18-year-old Albert Vargas lived all over Arizona in a variety of foster homes while growing up and he's emerged as a hero and role model. So Vargas was honored by getting to throw out the first pitch at the game.
When he prepared to take the mound at the Cubs vs. Giants game, he didn't get the usual player introduction.
"A ward of the state since age 12, Albert lives in a foster care group home.. first to graduate high school.." stated the game's announcer.
Vargas is one of seven children who has lived in nine foster homes. That didn't stop him. He graduated from Mesa High School and plans to be a surgeon.
Last fall in Tucson, a woman accidentally shot herself at the mall. Vargas helped stop the bleeding and paramedics say he saved her life.
Does he know he's an inspiration?
"It feels good. A lot of kids think they can't do it. I believe you can do it. I am proof of that," said Vargas.
He was honored by the Cubs and the Salt River Project's "Power is all Yours" campaign, but Vargas' only concern was looking reasonably good on the mound.
"It is a great experience. I didn't expect this many people to be here, but it's good,:" he said.
Sure enough, Vargas came through. Just like he always does.