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Tragedy To Triumph For US Paralympic Athletes

Published on August 2nd, 2016

by Amy Chudy, HooplaHa
These three men thought they lost it all! Tragic life events and devastating disabilities like theirs would have ended most people’s hopes and dreams. But Rick Doerr, Brad Kendell and Hugh Freund have taken their lives back and are sailing for their country in Rio on the 2016 U.S. Paralympic Sailing Team!

The trio has earned a place on the Rio 2016 U.S. Paralympic Sailing Team based on the results of the US Sailing Paralympic Athlete Selection Series in the Sonar three-person keelboat. They have been the top-performing American Sonar team since London 2012, and have earned medals at several of the world’s premier adaptive sailing events.

This will be the second Team USA appearance for Rick, who competed at Beijing 2008, and the first career Paralympic Games for Brad and Hugh. What they are doing, and all they have accomplished, shows nothing short of pure dedication and motivation!

We caught up with the team at the Sailing Foundation of New York’s Golden Spinnaker Gala fundraiser for the US Olympic and Paralympic Sailing Teams in New York City; see what these sailing heroes have to say!

This video was produced by Rob Hess and shot/edited by Denis Troi. To see more inspiring athletes beating the odds, check out the HooplaHa YouTube Page.

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