Alex & Emily Rector, Catherine & Cori Ray Rector, Peggy Rector, Inky Johnson, Sue Rector, Susan Byrd, Richard Thompson, Austin & Tara Simmons, Evan Rector, Amber Owens, Karen Thompson
The Rise Up Event benefiting Evan Rector and his family Saturday, April 18th, was an unforgettable night. The evening began with a homemade dinner provided by friends and family in the Anderson Field House at Columbia Academy. Afterwards guests perused the Silent Auction items and made their bids on stunning artwork, homemade cakes, jewelry, vacations, gift cards and baskets. Once the auction closed almost 800 guests filled the gymnasium to hear a moving speech by Austin Simmons about the struggles and triumphs the Rector family has faced since Evan lost his left arm and left leg in an accident last September. Simmons finished his speech with a standing ovation for the first responders, medical team, family supporters, and prayer warriors before introducing Inky Johnson.
Elizabeth Couch Sells, Christy Brown, Amy Neff, Kara Bishop
To say that Inky Johnson’s story is an inspiration is not enough. He is powerful, motivating, engaging, and gives every bit of himself to the audience when he speaks. Those that gathered to hear him and support Evan Rector’s family left with an appreciation for life and a drive to “Be Legendary”. Johnson grew up in the inner city of Atlanta and from the age of seven knew he wanted to play in the NFL. At a young age his determination to make it out of poverty drove him to train harder and longer to achieve a path he felt God set for him to follow. That path led him to the University of Tennessee.
Johnson gave his all to the University of Tennessee and broke the starting line up his sophomore year. Then a routine tackle in his junior year changed everything. With just 8 games to go before the NFL draft Johnson was playing against Air Force and went to make a tackle he’s done a thousand times before, but this time left him lying on the ground unable to move his right arm. The damage was irreparable, but his spirit and faith in God propelled him forward to the life he lives today. Johnson travels the country sharing his inspirational story with audiences and when not travelling spends time mentoring athletes and underprivileged youth in Atlanta. To read more about Inky Johnson visit his website at www.inkyjohnson.com or pick up a copy of his book Inky Johnson: An Amazing Story of Faith and Perseverance.
If you were unable to attend the Rise Up Benefit for Evan Rector but would still like to donate to help fund his prosthesis please go to www.prayerforevan.com or send a check to