Watching “American Ninja Warrior” contestant Josh Butler prepare to take on the famed course, you’d never guess the tragedy he recently experienced in his life.
The 31-year-old Nashville bus driver, who used sign language to communicate with his son (who cannot speak) before the course started, has a story that could bring a grown man to tears.
Back in 2015, his wife delivered their first son, Dewey, with severe medical complications. He had a rare medical disorder and passed away after only 132 days of life.
“There’s no other way to describe our time with Dewey – before he was born, during his life, and after he died – other than as spiritual warfare,” Josh said.
Of course the Butlers were absolutely crushed, but their grief soon found solace in hope when they learned of another baby. This child had similar medical problems to Dewey, but had been abandoned by his family.
The Butlers felt immediately that the other baby, named Braxtel, was theirs to take home. They began the process of foster care and then adopted the Braxtel. He wasn’t the baby Katie Butler grew in her body, but he was the second son she was meant to have.
“Caring for Brax has not in any way replaced our loss of Dewey…[he] has given us a reason to keep fighting and to keep loving. It would be so easy to lose hope and to be depressed. Even though we tend toward selfishness, Braxtel helps us to remember that our lives are not about us first but putting others first,” Josh said.