We’ve received over 8000 congratulation wishes so far, and we’ve read every single one. Going through them is like winning the race all over again. They each made us feel very special, and we thank you.

But today, we want to help someone else feel special.

Below is one of the first letters we received this week after winning the Amazing Race. It comes from a mother with a son named Colin:

“I’m sure you guys are way too busy to read this, but I want you to know how inspirational you two are to my 12 year old son. He is gay and is dealing with bullying and harassment in middle school. It’s so hard to see him going through this, and sometimes the “It Gets Better” message is lost on a 12 year old who feels that middle school will never end…We cheered you on every Sunday night and agonized every time you had difficulties. My son was so incredibly thrilled when you two won last night (as was I!). Thank you for helping him see that not only DOES it get better, it gets AMAZING.”    (Permission was granted by both Colin and his mother to reprint letter and use names.)

We were called the “Ultimate Underdogs” on the Amazing Race. And when we hit the finish mat, we urged everyone who feels like they’re down-and-out to “keep going, try as hard as you can, eventually someone will help you – and you will win.”

Colin, we know that you’re doing your best, and working as hard as you can in school. We shared Colin’s mom’s note with our fellow Amazing Racers – who have also all been underdogs for various reasons at some point in their lives.

And here is the entire Amazing Race 21 team’s message to you, Colin!…



Who is the Amazing Underdog in your life? Send them a word of encouragement in the comment section below.

by Josh and Brent

Reader Comments

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William Davis

After watching. IT IS SO OBVIOUS THE PROGRAM IS SCRIPTED!!! Sorry it could have been such a good program too!

Linda Turner

I’m ‘old’ to you-a grandma now-but I say this because it takes time to realize your true potential in life. Be true to yourself. Don’t have regrets-don’t compromise-follow your heart and your dreams. When I was a freshman in high school, I was very impressed with a group called ‘Up With People’, a group of students who traveled to schools across the country. They sang and danced, and talked to us about living life to the fullest, about meeting new people and learning as much as we could about our world. I wanted to join that group very badly (I also yearned to join the Peace Corps). My parents were older and very traditional so to them these were kids with an alternative lifestyle-they did their studies on the road (like homeschooling which was not done back then) and they were ‘entertainers’, which was looked upon as a ‘somewhat less than reputable avocation’. Needless to say, I never did either one. I still think about it, now almost 50 years later, and wonder what I would be doing today if I had.
Your dreams will stay with you forever-I did end up playing music and now help people learn how to grow their own vegetable gardens, so I have touched on it in a sense. But the ‘big picture’ is still in my brain-to make a difference for many others. Focus on your life, what you want it to be; care for others so that you can help to make their life better, and stay around positive people who support your beliefs, even though they may not be ‘like’ you. Positive, loving energy is catchy, and you’ll find lots of strength in those who are game changers in this world. Josh and Brent have shown us that nothing is impossible-make the most of everything, find something to do that you love and go with it. The world will open up to you and cheer you on all the way. All the best to you.

scott jacqmein

Hey Colin,
I too thought school and the pain of feeling different from my peers would never end. I know the harassment and fear can feel overwhelming. BUT you are not alone! People who haven’t even met you already care about you and love you like a brother. This will pass and you will find your place in this world with wonderful, kind, and caring people. You already have an amazing mom! God has a wonderful plan for you. Hang in there and your life will be more amazing than you ever dreamed!


Colin, It’s ok to be gay and you should be proud of that because gay stands for being cheerful, wonderful, lively, happy, amazing, etc. Guaranteed that many people who bullied you don’t know what gay really mean, prove to them that you are a submissive, considerate, gracious, generous, gentle and friendly type of person and I think your mom is very thankful and very proud for having an AMAZING and BEAUTIFUL son like you. Stay strong! 😉

Centralia Heart

Colin is amazing. However, if he is being bullied in school, the school is accountable for making it stop ( I am a retired teacher) A school district where i live did not stop bullying of a student because of his race. he was an honor student but dropped out a month before graduation because he could not stand the bullying. The school district was basically ineffective in trying to stop the bullying. The student just won a 1.25 million dollar settlement from the school district. Bullying is serious and the parent must be willing to go to the wall to fight for their child. Centralia


Hang in there Colin it gets better. My daughter’s middle school boyfriend came out about two years after they broke up. When they were in 10th grade there were 5 student deaths over a period of three months – one tragic accident and 4 suicides. The entire high school was in turmoil. Every student was affected whether they knew those who died or not. The deaths brought out every problem that kids had buried. This ex boyfriend struggled with his sexuality after the tradgedies so much that he went into counseling. When he came back to school he was a different person. He was out and proud. He was happy. His family and friends gave him their full support. My daughter and this boy are now seniors and are great friends. He has a great boyfriend who he even took to the junior prom in the spring!

Chad Snodgrass

Colin, I wish someone had told me when I was young that being gay is OK!! There is nothing wrong with you. You are amazing!! There are people in this world that don’t have as much amazingness as you do but, don’t hold it against them. You’ve got it, they don’t. Cherish it, nurse it, feed it, grow it and you will soon see that there is nothing that you can not do if you want to.

Liz Thomas

Colin, life is an amazing race, and the good guys do win! HANG IN THERE BECAUSE YOU ARE AMAZING.

Sharon V

I have a message for dear Colin – much of our teenage years were formed by positive feedback from family and friends and while that is important, it’s not everything. It’s about what you do that makes a difference. Make the focus about what direction you want your life to go in, then do that. Do you like photography? Take a class then be the best at that and be noticed for that. Being gay is only a part if who you are and in spite of everything that’s happening now – it will get better.


Colin- don’t let anyone tell you that you aren’t amazing. I know it seems like you will never get out of school or away from them, but you will. And you will be fabulous. Be amazing, Colin and remember that there is a bright, big and beautiful world out there that will love you for who you are.


Thank you Beekmans for showing this young man that he IS special! Colin you are Amazing!! Don’t stop believing in yourself..you can accomplish anything you put your mind to ; )

Judith Johnson

I’m Colin’s grandmother and I am so proud of him and of my daughter, Colin’s Mom and his Dad and older brother as well. Our whole family is supportive our of dear little guy, and these posts bring pride and tears to my eyes as I read the support of many other open-minded, loving people. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart and I speak for all our family. Grandma Judi


The fact that your family has given Colin the love and support and even just the vocabulary to understand and be who he is at the age of 12 gives me so much hope that this is becoming the norm for gay kids, rather than the exception. He must be an extraordinary and courageous child to be so open so young and he obviously learned that kind of courage from all of you. I have a 12-year-old son too, and we’re slogging through our own version of how tough it is to be this age. It sucks for everyone, and I want to cry when I think about kids who don’t have the kind of support you’re all giving Colin. The world is changing and you’re definitely part of that change!

Be Strong Colin

Colin, you are amazing and you are who you are no matter how the world is. Be strong, be tough, be yourself, be the way u think fit and i am proud of you.

Denise Golonka


Gay, Straight, purple, white, doesn’t matter because YOU ARE AMAZING – simply because you are YOU!

Josh and Brent,
Class act all the way! Thank you for being a light in what can feel like a very dark world.



Colin is amazing and of course Josh and Brent are amazing, but can I also give a shout out to Colin’s mom?! My goodness, he’s so lucky to have you and in a world where we see gay kids suffer the rejection that hurts the most – that of their parents and family members – day after day, the fact that Colin has already found that kind of acceptance at the age of 12 makes me cry. Good job, mom. You’re doing it right and you’re an example to all of us.

Howard Fites

Colin… You ARE amazing! We’ve been there, I’ve been there, and while life has it moments that test you in the long run it does get so much better. This Christmas, at 59, my partner and I gave each other wedding bands in anticipation that we soon will wed. When I was in middle school I could never have imagined such a thing, such happiness. Imagine how great life will be when you’re 59! Hang in there and always know you are loved.

Donna R.

I think Colin is amazing. Life does get better as you get older, not matter who you are. We become more in control of our own destinies and don’t let others have so much control over our happiness. Hang in there Colin!


Josh and Brent, I have been a fan of yours for several years
now when I first watched your show on Planet Green. When I saw you were on the Amazing Race, you had my vote from the beginning. I am so happy for you that you won – never give up, never surrender. And to Colin – you are an amazing person, be strong and keep you head held high !!! When people criticize other people, it is usually because they, themselves, are miserable. Love ya !!!!


Once it was written in the blackboard that I was the 2nd most beautiful girl at school. 1st place: everybody else. Well, I tell you Colin, I know how much I suffered with this and other “jokes” at the time. Nowadays, those people are ashamed for what they did… and also dazed with my beauty. Which, looking at my pictures at the time, I’ve always had, I just heard too much to what other people said and I didn’t believe in myself. Don’t let this happen to you. Believe in yourself. You can’t shut people’s mouth, but you can stop paying attention to what they say. What YOU think is what really matters. And if they can’t see who you are and the good things you have to offer… well, too bad for them.

Tanya Faia

I found the “”Twinnies” constant, vitupriterative, anti-gay comments incredibly offensive. I was shocked that those comments made it onto the air. You are wonderful examples of perseverance and grace. I am genuinely stunned that the “Twinnies'” photo would be on your website. I was horrified by their words in the last few episodes.


Beekman Boys. you are amazing. we are a gay married couple of 16 years in canada who followed you through the race and were thrilled you won as well. And Colin you are amazing too.

Sheldon Gilreath

Colin, you are an Amazing young man. Today is the first day of your amazing journey through this race that we call ‘Life’. There will be many road blocks, pit stops, detours and U-turns along the way, but always remember that you can do anything you set your mind on. Never listen to anyone that tells you that you aren’t special, it is them that has the problem, not you. You have a world of brothers and sisters who are cheering for you, Colin. We care about you and we think you are Amazing!