Georgia Blazers Named to 2012 High School All-American Team

Bryan Powell

Curran Brown

BlazeSports would like congratulate two of our Georgia Blazers for being named to the 2012 U.S. Paralympics Track and Field High School All American Team – Curran Brown and Bryan Powell.

Curran was recognized for her incredible performance in shot put throwing 5.96 meters. She is not only an All American, but she is the #1 ranked girl’s high school shot putter in the country. Curran also competes in javelin, discus and all the track events in her division. Curran is a senior at Johns Creek High School and plans to go to college to become a pediatrician.

Bryan excelled in javelin throwing 10.79 meters last season. He is top ranked in each of his seven wheelchair track and field events, holding several age group national records in the T33 and F33 division. Bryan is in his junior year at Lassiter High School.

Curran and Bryan are also team mates on the Georgia Blazers Varsity wheelchair basketball team.

Congratulations Curran and Bryan!

 

Posted in Athletics (Track and Field), Featured, News |

Georgia Blazers Compete at Fred Lamback Disability Swim Meet

 The Aiken-Augusta Swim League hosted the first annual Fred Lamback Disability Swim Meet, October 20-21. The event was held at the Augusta Aquatic Center in Augusta, GA. This was an open meet for all swimmers with any physical or intellectual disability.

Final results:

BlazeSports would like to congratulate the 14 Georgia Blazers on all there great performances at the 2012 Fred Lamback Swim Meet.  Our Blazers record 51-1st places finishes, 20-2nd place and 5-3rd place finishes. If we were to consider age division for our junior swimmers, the results would be 60-1st place and 12-2nd place and 1-3rd place finishes.

 

 

female swimmers swimmer
swimmer on starting block Paralympic swimmer and youth swimmer

Congratulations to all our Georgia Blazers for a great swim meet!

For a complete set of results visit the following link:

http://www.teamunify.com/gsasl/__eventform__/279461_the%20fred%20results.pdf

 

The Georgia Blazers Swim Team will have 14 swimmers including 2 Paralympians, 2 Military swimmers and 9 other swimmers, 3 of which will be competing in their first ever swim meet.

The event also includes a two day Paralympic Swim Camp on Thursday and Friday, which three Georgia Blazers, Mei Mei White, Trey Davis and Maya Beelner will participate in.

The schedule of the meet and each of the Georgia Blazers is as follows:

Saturday, October 20

Session 1

Warms up: 7:00-8:15 am

Start Time: 8:30 am

 

#1 Female 100 IM: MeiMei White (8), Nadia Hopkins (15), Rachel Ellis (29),

Lindsay Grogran

#2 Male 100 IM: Trey Davis (14), Sean Concepcion (22), Sergio del Valle (29)

#3 Female 25 Breast: Maya Kahn (11), Vica Beelner (11)

#4 Male 25 Breast: Yan X Babayeuski (12)

#5 Female 50 Free: MeiMei White, Nadia Hopkins, Maya Kahn, Vica Beelne,

Rachel Ellis, Madison Stanley (16), Lindsay Grogran

#6 Male 50 Free: Lantz Lamback (26), Trey Davis, Yan X Babayeuski,

Sean Concepcion, Sergio del Valle

#7 Female 100 Fly: Nadia Hopkins, Rachel Ellis, Lindsay Grogran

#8 Male 100 Fly: Sean Concepcion

#9 Female 150 IM

#10 Male 150 IM

#11 Female 50 Back: MeiMei White, Maya Kahn, Vica Beelner, Madison Stanley

#12 Male 50 Back: Trey Davis, Yan X Babayeuski, Sergio del Valle

 

Saturday, October 20,

Session 2

Warm-ups: Not before 3:30 pm

Start Time: Not before 4:30 pm

 

#13 Female 100 Breast: Rachel Ellis, Nadia Hopkins, Lindsay Grogran

#14 Male 100 Breast: Yan X Babayeuski, Sean Concepcion

#15 Female 25 Fly: MeiMei White, Vica Beelner

#16 Male 25 Fly

#17 Female 100 Free: MeiMei White, Nadia Hopkins, Maya Kahn, Vica Beelner,

Rachel Ellis, Madison Stanley, Lindsay Grogran

#18 Male 100 Free: Lantz Lamback, Trey Davis, Yan X Babayeuski, Sean Concepcion, Sergio del Valle

#19 Female 25 Back: Maya Kahn, Vica Beelner, Lindsay Grogran

#20 Male 25 Back: Yan X Babayeuski

#21 Female 200 IM: Rachel Ellis, Nadia Hopkins, MeiMei White

#22 Male 200 IM: Sean Concepcion, Trey Davis

 

Sunday, October 21

Session 3

Warm-ups: 7:00 am

Start Time: 8:30 am

 

#23 Female 75 IM (sm1-sm4)

#24 Male 75 IM (sm1-sm4)

#25 Female 100 Back: McKenzie Coan (15), Nadia Hopkins, Maya Kahn, Rachel Ellis, Madison Stanley, Lindsay Grogran

#26 Male 100 Back: Trey Davis, Yan X Babayeuski, Sean Concepcion, Sergio del Valle

#27 Female 50 Fly:  McKenzie Coan, Nadia Hopkins, MeiMei White, Rachel Ellis

#28 Male 50 Fly: Lantz Lamback, Trey Davis, Sean Concepcion, Sergio del Valle

#29 Female 25 Free: MeiMei White, Maya Kahn, Emma Meyers (6)

#30 Male 25 Free

#31 Female 50 Breast: McKenzie Coan, Maya Kahn, Rachel Ellis, Lindsay Grogran

#32 Male 50 Breast: Yan X Babayeuski

#33 Female 200 Free: MeiMei White, Nadia Hopkins, Madison Stanley

#34 Male 200 Free: Trey Davis, Sean Concepcion, Sergio del Valle

 

Fred Lamback Disability Swim Meet: Fred Lamback is highly respected in the swimming community as a committed and loveable coach. He has made countless contributions to the U.S. Paralympic Military Program, the American Swimming Coaches Association (ASCA) – including serving on the staff at the 2004 Paralympic Games and of course on our very own BlazeSports America team. He is Head Swim Coach and swimming coordinator of the Georgia Blazers, as well as the technical advisor for all the BlazeSports disability swim programs in Georgia.

In 2009, he was named the James (Jimi) Raymond Flowers Disability Committee Coach of the Year which honors “coaches with outstanding inclusion of swimmers with a disability under the nominee’s direct coaching assignment and/or promotion of swimmers with a disability and disability swimming within the nominee’s sphere of influence. Contributions to inclusion may include club, LSC, national, or international examples. This demonstration of inclusion and influence should be evident as part of the nominee’s ongoing coaching philosophy.”

Fred’s dedication to swimmers with disabilities started with his son, Lantz. Lantz has cerebral palsy and had a tough time finding his niche growing up until his father introduced him to swimming. It was a frustrating process at first swimming against abled bodied athletes, but with encouragement from Fred and making the switch to swimming with other athletes with disabilities it was Lantz’s time to shine. Over the years, he has collected his fair share of medals at junior nationals, nationals and the biggest stage of all the Paralympics. At the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games, Lantz won his first gold medal in the 100 meter backstroke s7 division with a new world record of 1 minute 12.09 seconds. You can bet that Fred was in the stands taking in that proud moment of what his son accomplished that day, in the years past and what’s to come in the future. In London, Lantz took away a gold and bronze medal to bring his total to eight Paralympic Medals – two gold, two silver and four bronze.

 

 

Posted in Featured, News, Swimming |

BlazeSports and ABLE Network on Disability visit Delta

2012 Disability Fair

On Wednesday October 10th the ABLE Network on Disability hosted their annual Disability Fair.  The event was held in the historic hangar 13 at Delta headquarters, a unique venue which houses the ‘Spirit of Delta’, a giant Boeing 767 on permanent display as part of the Delta Heritage Museum. The Disability Fair is an annual event organized to give Delta employees a wide range of experiential and educational experiences related to working with people with disabilities. 

BlazeSports had a booth on site displaying information about programs and services, and challenged attendees to try out a wheelchair basketball.   Other organizations represented included The Shepherd Center, Georgia School for the Deaf and Center for the Visually impaired.

Keynote speaker, Aimee Copeland, spoke about her plans for the future and dream of setting up a Wilderness Therapy Centre for people with physical disabilities to experience the outdoors.  

For more information about BlazeSports programs and services in your community, contact us at 404- 270-2000 or info@blazesports.org.

Posted in News |

BlazeSports Haiti continues its effort to develop Paralympic Sports in Haiti

Port-au-Prince-BlazeSports International continues to support and develop Paralympic sport programs in Haiti through funding from United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and other notable partners. For Jousue Cajuste, who participated in the Paralympic Games for the first time, this event was an amazing experience, one that he will never forget. Cajuste, is now a familiar face to BlazeSports Haiti as he trained for London 2012 at the BlazeSports Haiti Sports Academy in Port-au Prince, for several weeks before his London 2012 debut. (See full story here) www.blazesports.org

The Haitian delegation, led by BlazeSports Haiti Director Daniel Pierre Charles consisted of three athletes Nephtalie Jean Louis, (javelin and shot put) Leon Gaisil (hand-cycling) and Jousue Cajuste (javelin and shot put) and their coaches as well as the Chairman of the Haitian National Paralympic Committee Jean Chevalier Sanon. While Cajuste, achieved his personal best records in both javelin and shot put, the Haitian delegations’ participation in London 2012 was primarily to serve as a foundation and platform for Rio 2016. According to the Haitian National Paralympic Committee, Haiti’s participation in the London 2012 games was to build up interest amongst Haitians with physical disability in order to develop a bigger and much more competitive delegation for Rio 2016.

One of the highlights in London was when Cajuste received an Orthobox prosthesis donation just two days before his F42 javelin competition. The donation was announced in the Olympic Stadium where Cajouste received a standing ovation from athletes and spectators alike- a moment Mr. Pierre-Charles describes as ‘emotional and moving for the Haitian delegation’. Nephtalie Jean Louis was one of 15 athletes participating in the games as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador for the fight to eradicate polio.

Overall, the London 2012 games served as a reminder of the triumph of the human spirit, an opportunity to inspire and be inspired. Preparations for Rio 2016 are already underway as Haiti hopes to grab a couple of gold medals.

After a massive earthquake in January 2010, several thousands of Haitians became physically disabled. BlazeSports International, is responding through its commitment to empower people with physical disabilities worldwide, and has been providing and supporting sport and recreational opportunities for persons with physical disabilities in Haiti with the support of the partners like USAID, UN Office for Sport Development and the US Department of State.

 

Posted in News |

National Disability Employment Awareness Month

National Disability Employment Awareness Month

In 1945, as the United States began to emerge from four years of war, the nation faced many challenges. Not only were millions of veterans returning home and looking for work, but hundreds of thousands of veterans who sustained a permanent disability were also seeking to integrate back into their community through family, recreation and of course employment.

Long before the ADA, the Paralympic Games and You Tube were around to protect, showcase and increase awareness of all the capabilities of persons with disability, the nation had at least one prominent figure that served to show that physical disability was not a hindrance to employment. Despite adult onset polio, the use of a wheelchair for daily mobility and the use of braces and crutches for public appearances, our 32nd President, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, served 12 years in office and successfully guided the nation through two of the most harrowing times in our history; the Great Depression and World War II.

Although FDR did not live to see the end of the war, his example and the need to provide all veterans the opportunity to work and build careers led Congress, in 1945, to pass Public Law 176 that declared the first week of October would be annually recognized as “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week”. In the late 1980’s Congress declared the entire month of October as “National Disability Employment Awareness Month”.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy has announced the official theme for the 2012 National Disability Employment Awareness Month is “A Strong Workforce is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?”

We would love to hear from you! What are you or your company doing to ensure an inclusive workforce? What are the obstacles you face in providing an inclusive work environment?

Here is a link to some resources to help you create an inclusive work force http://www.dol.gov/odep/topics/ndeam/.

Links to Famous People with a Disability

http://www.loc.gov/disabilityawareness/people/

http://www.disabled-world.com/artman/publish/article_0060.shtml

 

Posted in Featured, News |