The past week has been rough on one American sports icon. Enough said. I'm not going there.
Another sports icon, however, touched us all yet again. As usual, she uplifted us.
The ESPY Awards on Wednesday night were chock full of glitz, highlight clips and forgettable chatter. Then the superficiality gave way for Pat Summitt.
Since Summitt announced her retirement from active coaching duty at Tennessee in April, the honors and awards have been queuing up like Lady Vol fans at an autograph session.
It's hard to top a trip to the White House and a tribute — The Presidential Medal of Freedom — from the Leader of the Free World (who happens to be a hoops junkie).
That said, the presentation at the ESPYs of the Arthur Ashe Courage Award in Los Angeles was extremely moving.
And classy. ESPN has its self-important faults but they got it right with Summitt. From Peyton Manning's introduction, to Reese Witherspoon's video narration to Summitt's acceptance remarks, the 13-minute tribute was riveting. Candace Parker wasn't the only one (blush) fighting back tears.
And, of course, Tyler Summitt, who we learned for the first time was "a gift from God" after six miscarriages.
The crowd at the Nokia Theatre, from all avenues of sports and showbiz, was rapt, then rose to its feet as Summitt appeared to accept the award from Manning.
"It was really neat,'' Summitt told me Friday. "I was just overwhelmed. It meant a lot to me.''
By this point, I probably should have mentioned why Summitt is getting a standing "O" in L.A. But you know that part, the revelation 11 months ago of early-onset dementia, Alzheimer's type, a diagnosis that failed to deter Summitt from coaching one final SEC championship season.
The Ashe Award is presented annually to someone whose courage transcends sports. Past winners include Muhammad Ali, Nelson Mandela, Billie Jean King and the heroes of United Flight 93 who prevented the Sept. 11 terrorists from wreaking further disaster.
A couple of college basketball coaches are on the list, too.
One is Dean Smith, whom Summitt passed in 2005 to become Division I basketball's winningest coach.
Smith, too, suffers from a dementia-related condition. At 81, he rarely appears in public. At 60, Summitt is seemingly everywhere, promoting the fight against Alzheimer's under the banner of the Pat Summitt Foundation.
Don't miss her at Bristol Motor Speedway next month dropping the green flag while Trevor Bayne drives the "We Back Pat" car.
"If I'm not leading by example, I'm not doing the right thing,'' Summitt said while accepting the Ashe Award. "And I always want to do the right thing.''
The first Ashe recipient also was a sideline stalker. In accepting the award in 1993, Jim Valvano, terminally ill with cancer, delivered the unforgettable challenge: "Don't give up. Don't ever give up.''
Valvano lost his fight a couple of months later. But the V Foundation he inspired has since raised millions of dollars for cancer research.
Summitt's foundation will do likewise for Alzheimer's research. Book it. And by anyone's appraisal, the coach emeritus still has plenty of fight left in her.
"She seems to be doing mighty well to me now,'' her mother, Hazel Head, observed in the ESPY video, her voice cracking with hopeful emotion.
"I'm gonna keep on keeping on,'' Summitt said. "I promise you that.''
She won't give up. She won't ever give up.