PROUD parents have described their delight after their two sons’ stunning achievements on the same day.
Aaron Staunch, 17, competed with Hartlepool dance crew Ruff Diamond in the World Hip Hop Championships in Las Vegas, USA. They finished ninth in the world, and first among the European entries.
Within hours, Aaron’s brother Bradley, 16, was ringing home to say he had just won a two-year contract to play professional football full-time with Carlisle United.
Dad Steven, 50, who works as a team leader with JDR Cables in Hartlepool, said: “This has to be the happiest day of my life.”
And mum Janet, 46, said: “This is all of their dreams coming true.”
Aaron, a student at English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College, returned home this week after competing with Ruff Diamond in the world championships.
Janet was in the audience as the team battled through preliminaries and semi-finals to become one of the best dance teams on the planet.
She said: “What they did was unbelievable and fantastic.”
The team and their travelling supporters returned to Hartlepool to find more than 300 fans waiting to give them a heroes’ welcome in Church Street.
And just as they returned, Bradley rang home to confirm that his trial with Carlisle United, where he has starred as a centre half in the youth team, had been turned into a permanent contract.
Janet added: “I have two boys and they each had a dream. One wanted to be a footballer and one wanted to be a dancer. As a parent, you say ‘try and do something else’.
“Then, one of them tells you he is in the world dancing championships and the other is signing a contract with a football club!
“It is all of their dreams coming true.”
Bradley, who lived at the family home in Hart Station before moving to Cumbria to be closer to his club, had played for the Greatham under-16 football team where he was spotted by a talent scout for Aston Villa.
And although his time there was cut short by an ankle injury, Villa’s experts saw enough promise to refer Bradley on to Carlisle.