Mesabi Range College RB Taquarius Wair to receive Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at ESPYS

Freshman not allowing tragedy to hold him back from the field (7:00)

Taquarius Wair played the 2019 college football season at Mesabi Range College, but how he got there is the real story. (7:00)

Taquarius Wair, who overcame severe injuries in a fire and is now a running back for Mesabi Range College, will receive the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at The ESPYS.

The award is given to a person in the sporting world who has overcome great obstacles through perseverance and determination.

Wair lost the fingers on his left hand when he was 4 after he was severely burned in a fire at his family home. The fire claimed the life of his sister, Shawneece.

"It is an honor to receive the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance and humbling to be on a list with the previous recipients," Wair said. "I use the phrase 'Don't give up' in my life every day, and I will continue to do so in the fight for my dream."

Wair, who spent a month in a coma, was given a 20% chance of survival by doctors. He underwent numerous medical procedures including skin grafts and reconstructive surgery.

Wair played high school football for Minneapolis North before attending Mesabi Range College, a community college with two campuses in Minnesota. He intends to play for a four-year college.

The Jimmy V Award is named after former NC State men's basketball coach Jim Valvano, who was diagnosed with cancer at age 46 and died a year later.

The ESPYS help to raise awareness and funds for the V Foundation for Cancer Research. The ESPYS will air June 21 on ESPN at 9 p.m. ET.