As the plane slowly descended through the clouds towards LAX, I closed my eyes to think of the successful athletes this city has bred for decades. A film strip of many names and faces popped up in my head: Jackie Joyner-Kersee, a UCLA track and basketball star and a 4-time Olympian, she was ranked among the all-time greatest athletes in the heptathlonas as well as long jump, a big role model to young women athletes;"Magic" Johnson, picked in the 1979 draft, he spent all 13 years of his NBA career in Los Angeles leading the Lakers to 5 national titles; Elgin Baylor, an 11-time All-Star and Hall of Famer ranks among the top 25 in points and rebounds in NBA history; Candace Cable, a 9-time Paralympian and the first woman athlete to compete both in winter and summer Paralympic games; and Dave Kiley, a 6-time Paralympian, legendary wheelchair basketball player who has won 13 Paralympic medals, 11 of them gold in 3 different sports, head coach of the 2012 London U.S. Women's Paralympic Wheelchair Basketball team. This dreamy film strip was interrupted when our plane touched the ground. I was brought to reality. I was in Los Angeles and was looking forward to finding out what it had to offer!
There are a few benchmarks that occur in our lives that are significant or monumental. They can sometimes break our hearts or bring us to our knees. There are always those times though that one will remember for a lifetime for the good it has done, not just for the individual, but more importantly for the masses it effects. In this blog, I will attempt to capture such an occurrence.
After my spinal cord injury in 1973 my biggest fear and concern was not getting my legs back. Sounds weird? I was told early on by a hospital acute care aid that I probably would neither be able to have kids nor walk again. He spoke out of turn and my father later had that guy pinned up against the wall for telling me that. Well, I was certainly crushed by the news, like my spinal cord. My foxhole prayer to my God was that if he was going to take my legs, please ‘Lord let me have children!" I prayed this over and over as I laid in my hospital bed at Rancho Los Amigos Hospital in Southern California. Why I felt that way back then, I’m still not sure. I had a constant vision of being a father, having a beautiful wife and become a parent and yes, even a grandparent at the age of 19. So, after my 4 month stay in prison, aka rehab lol I was turned loose on the world with a new life in front of me. A life I was petrified and uncertain about. In the prison rehab, I was safe and protected. I didn’t want to leave as I had no confidence at all and especially with girls or women.
Original article was posted on Mpower Sports and Recreation on September 15th, 2016
Original article was published on Mpower Sports and Recreation on September 27th, 2016
As Team USA is finishing up its final round of training before heading down to Rio at the end of August, we are excited to present the U.S. Paralympic Men's and Women’s wheelchair basketball interviews to shed some light into the lives of some of the most incredible athletes and coaches in the world.
Many thanks to the National Wheelchair Basketball Association for helping coordinate the interviews for Team ABC and for letting us use photos of the athletes.
ABC Medical is the proud exclusive medical supply sponsor of the National Wheelchair Basketball Association.
We wish Team USA Best of Luck in Brazil!
In the summer of 2015, during the Para Pan American Games in Toronto, a young athlete on Team USA caught our attention with his success in wheelchair racing. As we followed his athletic journey closer, we found out that he also played wheelchair basketball with the Para Spokane Jr. Team and traveled to Louisville for the NWBA Nationals. We were convinced this young athlete had a bright future ahead of him. We reached out to his family to learn more about his journey toward becoming the great athlete he is today. We are excited to share the story of Spencer Kimbro.