3 A NEWS 8 EXCLUSIVE TONIGHT — THE STATE TENNIS FINALS WERE PLAYED TONIGHT IN WEST HARTFORD. AND ON THE COURT… A REMARKABLE STORY OF A PLAYER… WHO HAD OPEN HEART SURGURY A FEW MONTH AGO.. ONLY TO RETURN TO THE COURT…. TWO WEEKS AGO… AND PLAYING IN THE FINALS.IT’S A STORY OF A YOUNG MAN’S DETERMINATION, DRIVE, AND OF COURSE THE LOVE OF TENNIS. ((NATS… OF BALL))WESTON HIGH SCHOOL JUNIOR STEVEN DAMPF IS THRILLED TO BE PLAYING IN THE CONNECTICUT STATE TENNIS FINALS…. A DOUBLES MATCH… EVEN HE CAN’T BELIEVE HE’S A PART OF.STEVEN DAMPF – WESTON HIGH SCHOOL JR. 1:00:16 – I DIDN’T EXPECT TO MAKE IT THIS FAR, IN THE STATES…YOU SEE…. NOT EVEN THREE MONTHS AGO. 16 YEAR OLD STEVEN DAMPF HAD OPEN HEART SURGERY/1:00:29 – I WAS BORN WITH COGNIIGIVE HEART DISEASE AND BICUSPID AEROTIC VAVLUE. HE AND HIS FAMILY HAD BEEN LIVING WITH THE FACT AND FEAR THAT ONE DAY HIS HEART WOULD NO LONGER BE STRONG ENOUGH TO KEEP HIM ALIVE. HE HAD AN ANEURIMS AT AGE 10. AND IT BECAME IMPARITIVE STEVEN NEEDED IMMEDIATE SURGURY IN FEBRUARY. HIS DOCTOR TOLD HIM HE MAY NEVER PLAY TENNIS AGAIN. BUT DON’T TELL THAT TO A YOUNG MAN… WITH A HEART… FULL OF LOVE… FOR THE GAME OF TENNIS. 3:40 – I WAS OUT OF THE HOSPITAL 4TH DAY OF RECOVERY, EXTREMELY SOON.1:24 -I CREDIT HIS COACH, I THINK HE MADE A PROMISE TO STEVEN HE COULD PLAY INT HE STATES IF HIS DR. SIGNED OFF ON IT.WITH HIS DOCTORS CONSENT, AND STEVEN’S DRIVE… HIS PARENTS STILL CAN’T BELIEVE THEY ARE WATCHING HIS STRONG FORM RETURN… A POWEFUL BACKHAND, QUICK MOVING FEET, AND THAT LIGHTING SERVE.VANESSA DAMPF – STEVEN’S MOM3:28 – I’VE CRIED EVERYTIME HE PLAYS TENNIS. RICHARD DAMPF – STEVEN’S DAD 1:24 – HE WALKED ON TO THE TEAM 2 WEEKS AGO, HAD SOME WARM UP MATCHES AND HERE HE IS IN THE FINALS. IT’S NOT A SURPRISE TO STEVEN’S COACH. GARY MEUNIER – WESTON HIGH SCHOOL COACH1;1:02 – STEVEN IS A FIGHTER, HE WAORKS AS HARD IN THE CLASSROOM AS HE DOES ON THE COURT. IT’S PART OF HIS DNA.STEVEN… IS HAVING THE BEST GPA YEAR OF HIS LIFE. HE’S A STRAIGHT A STUDENT. HE’S ALSO ON THE SCHOOL VARSITY CROSS COUNTRY TEAM AND IS AN EMT. HE CREDITS HIS FAMILY, HIS COACH AND HIS TEAM IN HIS RAPID RECOVERY. 1:01:23 – I HAVEN’T HAD THAT MUCH TROUBLE, I WAS OUT OF SHAPE, NOT EXERCISING FOR MONTHS… I HAVE A GOOD PARTNER GETING ME THROUGH EVERYTHING.((NATS OF SERVE))THIS ALL STATE TENNIS PLAYER, RANKED 14TH IN CONNECTICUT…. SERVES UP THIS ADVICE TO ANYONE FACING WHAT COULD BE SEEN AS ONE OF LIFE’S FAULTS…4:29 – DON’T LET THINK LIKE THIS GET YOU DONW…. STAY DETERMINED. 3 DETERMINED. DONW…. STAY LIKE THIS GET YOU 4:29 – DON’T LET THINK LIFE’S FAULTS…BE SEEN AS ONE OF LIFE’S FAULTS… 4:29 – DON’T LET THINK LIKE THIS GET YOU DONW…. STAY DETERMINED.

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Dennis Veasley

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