Nothing can dampen the spirit of these Hawaii athletes.Their commitment to overcoming obstacles is incredibly inspiring.
All canoe paddlers have disabilities - paraplegia, amputees, polio & visual impairment. Six are previous patients at REHAB. All athletes! Their goal is the Adaptive Paddling World Sprints in Calgary, Alberta, Aug. 11-15, 2012, - entering 6-man, 12-man and 1-man canoe events.
The World Sprints has evolved from exhibition in 2004 & 2006 to a full medal event in 2008, where Team Hawaii swept the majority of the gold medals. The 1-man canoe event was added to the 2016 Paralympics in Brazil.
Meet the paddlers from O'ahu, Maui, Kaua'i and Hawai'i. and please help them by donating funds for their transportation and lodging. They have individualy funded everything else. All they need is $8,000:
Christine Greer - injury: paraplegic (motorcycle accident '93), Senior Tax Advisor.
Started paddling in '05, 3-time gold medalist World Sprints '08. Represented Great Britain in 5 World Team Cups in wheelchair tennis, 3-time Honolulu Marathon Women's champion.
John Greer -injury: paraplegic (auto accident '84).
Started paddling in '05 & paddles for Waikiki Yacht Club.
3-time gold medalist World Sprints "08, Steersmen for 1st all adaptive crew to finish the Molokai Hoe. Competed in 2004 Athens Paralympic Games in wheelchair tennis. Ranked 6 in the world and represented Team USA at 3 World Team Cup's.
Alicia Hatori- injury: paraplegic (auto accident '88). Administrative Assistant, Castle Medical Center.
Started paddling in 2009 and did the Molokai Hoe.
Rich Julian- injury: paraplegic (auto accident '86)
Co-founder of Access Surf Hawaii. Started paddling in '05 and paddles for Waikiki Yacht Club. Did the Molokai Hoe '10.
Vickia Koutroupas - Retired Air Force JAG.
Injury: visually Impaired (Retinitis Pigmentosa)
Started paddling in '05 and paddles for Waikiki Yacht Club.
The World Sprints will be her 1st time competing in an adaptive event.
Mike Nishimoto -injury: paraplegic (auto accident '03)
Started paddling in '11 and paddles for Hui Nalu Canoe Club.
Retired from the US Navy, Persian Gulf War veteran.
Triathlete and represented Team USA at the NYC Triathlon & World Olympic Distance Triathlon in Hamburg, Germany.
Jeremy Wagner-injury: Paraplegic , Iraq War veteran
Bronze medalist World Sprints '08 and done 3 Molokai Hoe races. USA Biathlon National team member.
Diane Whitcomb-injury: Charcot-Marie-Tooth syndrome.
Social worker for Marine and family programs. Started paddling in 2009 and did the Molokai Hoe '09.
Ann Yoshida-injury: Paraplegic (auto accident '00).
Certified rehab counselor and professor of social occupational therapy at a private college in Korea.
Dawna Zane - injury: Paraplegic (auto accident '00).
Masters degree in marriage and family counseling, social worker for Hospice Hawaii. Started paddling in '02 and has done 2 Molokai Hoe races.Finished 9 Honolulu Marathons.
Karl Kahui- IInjury: Polio
Draftsmen, Hawaii Commercial & Sugar.
Started paddling in '08 and has done 3 Molokai Hoe races.
Darralyn Clarke- injury: Arm Amputee (below elbow).
Gold medalist World Sprints '08 and 3 Molokai Hoe races.
Susannah Rice-Kamanu- injury: Cauda Equina Syndrome
Certified substance abuse counselor, Big Island Substance Abuse Counsel. Started paddling in '04. Miss Wheelchair Hawaii 2012
Mark Wormley- injury: Leg amputee (above knee).
Vietnam veteran. 3- time gold medalist World Sprints '08, Finished 2 Molokai Hoe races and paddles for Keauhou Canoe Club.
Vic Allen -injury: Visually impaired