Spokane has six ParaSport athletes competing in the Junior World Championships

KREM 2's Laura Papetti talks to some parathletes and their families about their lives, their training and their hope.

Spokane, Wash --- ParaSport Spokane and Teresa Skinner are touted by athletes and families as being the reason behind the success of parathletes from the Inland Northwest.

At the upcoming Junior World Championships, Spokane has several parathletes competing.

Athletes from around here have access to pediatric orthopedic care at Shriners. Four out of the six athletes going to Switzerland are patients at Shriners.

Elizabeth Floch is 14 years old and will be heading to compete.

“I’m not nervous I like competing,” said Floch.

For those who treat the kids it is exciting to see patients become athletes and shed traditional paradigms about people with disabilities.

“It’s not your typical path that you normally think. It’s pretty inspiring and it’s a good example of kids, that it doesn’t matter who you are it’s just good to go out and have fun,” said Shriners Hospital employee, Missy Martin.

That is the goal of Coach Skinner, to show those in the Inland Northwest that this is a place of possibilities. She believes that several hundred people with disabilities do not even know that ParaSport Spokane exists, and there are opportunities that can grow from a track in Spokane to a future never imagined.

An example of that is Isaiah, when he was six he discovered he could do more, and become more. The Cheney teen talked of becoming a bio-medical engineer and hopes to compete in the 2020 Para Olympic games in Tokyo. In fact, Isaiah and his father already have a plan. If he goes to the Olympics then life on the farm will change.

“The one thing I’ve committed to him and myself is if he makes the team in Tokyo, the cows are gone. I’ll put them up for sale, whatever it takes to get there. In the meantime, the cows and all the other work still exists. Because when it comes to getting the job done, there are no excuses on this farm or on the track,” said Isaiah's dad, Robert Rigo.

If you are on this team, there is no looking back, only getting ahead.

© 2017 KREM-TV


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