It’s not that hard to roam around the internet and find player profiles. Feature stories about players with a hard life, a unique upbringing, or whatever other details a writer latched onto and said “oh, that sounds cool, let me write about him.” It can be tricky to find a balance between telling an interesting story and telling their story.
We previously let Nik Needham’s mom tell his story. As it turns out, his roommate Adrian Hynson is also heading into his senior season as a UTEP Miner, and he’ll be a fighter this season just as he has in every year and season before that one.
Adrian DeShawn Hynson was a born fighter from birth; he never gives up and always finishes strong what he starts.
He is the second eldest of four boys born in Pensacola, Florida on May 14, 1996, at the naval hospital to his proud parents – Retired U. S. Navy Chief Donald D. Hynson Sr. and Lori A. Hynson (that’s me).
It wasn’t until after numerous hours of labor that Adrian arrived through a C-section delivery. I noticed his eyes were very slanted, different than his older brothers eyes. Some of my friends wondered if he would even talk because by the age of two he was not using his words and pointed for everything that he wanted.
The one exception to this was my best friend and one of my closest college friends, who said to me one day that she could tell by the size of his hands and feet that he was going to be someone special, but I shrugged it off.
I later found out from an eye doctor in Virginia Beach, where we had relocated when he was four, that he had a lazy right eye and he would need to wear a patch daily for six months to a year.
Being the boy that he was he never kept the patch on and I was afraid for him. Adrian also had to wear eyeglasses, but after he got teased by some of his classmates he didn’t want to wear them anymore, and he would often take them off whenever I wasn’t around.
In addition to dealing with his vision and speaking dilemmas, he also had to frequently deal with my being mother and father, since his dad was active duty at the time, out at sea for four years and onshore three years at a time.
His father’s rotation continued all the way until Adrian was sixteen which was a difficult situation for all of us. Our family moved between Pensacola and Virginia Beach from the time Adrian was one year old until he was thirteen before moving to Corpus Christi, where he completed his last year of junior high school.
Now let’s backtrack to the beginning of Adrian’s life.
We enrolled Adrian into a private preschool in Virginia Beach at the age of three where he began to use his words and quickly realized how much he could get when he spoke. We then began to sign Adrian up for little league sports because he was very active. He always seemed to have a lot of energy to burn every single day.
The first sport he played was football for the Bayside Kansas City Chiefs and he loved it. We moved back to Pensacola and enrolled Adrian into a second private school shortly before he turned six and he played little league football for the Myrtle Grove Eagles until shortly before fourth grade. He also played one year of T-ball, but he found that he didn’t enjoy it as much.
Adrian did discover that he enjoyed bowling and skating. He also had to deal with the fact that he was no longer the baby because his first younger brother was born into the family. If that wasn’t enough before we could be transferred back to Virginia Beach a second time we lost a lot of our personal belongings to the aftermath rains of Hurricane Ivan.
Our two-story off-base home had flooded from all three ends; the front door, back door, and garage door. I recall sitting at the top of the stairway crying, and Adrian came and sat beside me and wrapped his little arm around me and said, “Don’t worry mom we’ll take care of this mess and someday I’ll take care of you and buy you new stuff.”
I cried even more because some of the valuables that we had lost were irreplaceable; pictures and other belongings that were stored in the garage in boxes since we were moving within a couple of months. It had all been destroyed.
This delay meant that Adrian was eight years old when we moved back to Virginia Beach, and this time he entered public school for the first time in his life, which was a huge struggle for him. We paid for private tutors, plus he went in early or stayed late to get extra help from his teachers. Seeing Adrian’s struggles was very difficult for me as his mother and the pain I ached for him is unexplainable, but I could only turn to God and pray.
Seeing God’s work brought joy to my heart and tears. to my eyes.
Adrian put in a lot of hard work, dedication, and commitment. I also worked with him even more at home with a hooked on phonics kit that I purchased, and he gradually began to grasp the concepts of his school lessons.
We had missed the sign-up dates when Adrian was in fourth grade, so at this point, we signed Adrian up with the Virginia Beach Mustangs Pop Warner League. He continued playing defense until he was in the sixth grade and his coach gave him a chance to become running back; he eagerly accepted the challenge with open arms and he excelled at it.
After scoring his first touchdown Adrian’s passion for football grew even more; he was shining from the inside-out! He earned the nickname “Sweet Feet Adrian” from his head coach at that time.
He was awesome and he knew it, but his coach made it crystal clear that he wanted to see everyone’s report card and they had better be passing with A’s and B’s, anything less and he wanted to know why.
Adrian passed both fourth and fifth grade plus the state tests, then soared even more in junior high. Adrian then came home one evening after school and said to me, “Mom if you stop making me go to tutoring and give me a chance to go outside and play with my new friends I promise I’ll make good grades.”
Guess what? He did it!
He began to make honor roll just like he did in private school and he even scored as advanced in a couple of areas of the state test while he was in the sixth and seventh grade. Although football was first and foremost on Adrian’s list of sports, we knew that keeping him active was the best thing ever, so we signed him up for basketball, track, and he learned to play the trumpet, as well.
We relocated one final time with the military to Corpus Christi where Adrian entered eighth grade, but not before welcoming another younger brother into our family.
Adrian played football for his new school at Flour Bluff Junior High and played defense again, saying that he had to make a name for himself at his new school. He learned the plays and did so well that his coach told me, “For Adrian to be a small size kid he sure has a hard hit and he’s fast.”
This earned him the nickname “Hurricane Hynson” His coach the following year as a freshman at Flour Bluff wanted him to be a running back again and play some defense, which he did happily. As he entered the tenth grade, he earned a spot on the varsity and made a true name for himself. He was #12 Safety and he loved it!
Adrian then asked if we could afford to send him to a football camp, so we made a way to do it, and from there we prepared to send him to other camps each summer. Adrian did so well that by the end of his junior year he had broken his high school’s single-game tackles record and made First Team All-District.
Adrian had set his goal to go to every football camp possible until he got a D1 offer. Before entering his senior year he signed up for so many football camps, and he attended them all until he got his offer from University of Texas at El Paso with a full ride scholarship.
By the actual end of his senior season, he was voted player of the year by the local community on Channel 6 News. Adrian was MVP and Second Team All-State Defensive Back. He finished out his senior year by assisting the track team to first in districts in the 400m & 800m Relays, first in Area in the 400m Relay, and qualifying for regionals for the 400m & 800m Relays.
So now you see why Adrian is my fighter. He fought his way to the top every time, at every grade level, at every school, and on every team. He is definitely who I say he is; not because he’s my son, but because he’s proven it to be true over and over again.
I must admit it has been an absolute pleasure birthing, raising, and mentoring one of my favorite athletes in this world. I have enjoyed watching Adrian grow up and become the young man that he has become. His dedication, hard work and determination along with professional training have made him the strong athlete that he is today, and I will always be his #1 fan.
Adrian has been more than an inspiration for his family and friends alike; especially for his younger brothers that admire and look up to him as they create their own journeys in life.
Adrian Deshawn Hynson is MY SON THE FIGHTER!!!