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The High Deserts Social Network Blog…

Springtacular with Disabled Sports Easter Sierra (DSES) April 2011


After the Star Spangled Banner and a few words of encouragement from director Kathy Copeland, all the special athletes start towards the snow. When they first get on skis some are barely able to stand up; then with the help of one… or several volunteers, they are soon feeling the wind in their faces and the terrain flow under their skis.

Brian has been skiing since he was 8. He was on a 30 foot fenced in area with almost no slope for only the first few hours of the first day. He was so insistent on being allowed to ride the chair lift that he conned a Mammoth Mountain Ski Instructor to take him on the chair.

We rigged up an elastic brace that kept his ski tip together and he went right down the hill. When he would fall we would just grab the back of his jacket and stand him back up again. We found out early on that he had no injury at all to his sence of balance.

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Flash forward to 2011 and Brian is 25 years old and weighs in at 170 and is 5’10” tall. He remains non-verbal although there should be no doubt that he communicates his every desire and need in his own way, but in a way that you are sure to grasp, even if you are meeting him for the first time. He still likes to ride on the chair lift. He still like to play with boxes. He still like to play with balloons.

And…Brian can ski.

Now we fasten his ski tips together with a special ski brace made of stainless steel. We control his decent speed with tethers clipped to the ski tips. We stear him down the hill. Brian has been on the same two runs for the past 17 years. The big smile on his face tells us he he likes it!

Over the years some of our families best friends have come from this event. Some are employees of Mammoth Mountain and some are volunteers with Disabled Sports Eastern Sierra. I cannot tell you how good it feels to think of you all as friends. Every year we greet each other with hugs on the first day. Wondering what new achievement we will witness on the snow this year. Every year we end the 4 day event with more hugs, sorry the event is over, and that it will be another year before we have a chance to see it happen again.

There is never any doubt as we leave the Mountain that we were part of a life changing experience for the Special Athletes…and for ourselves.

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May 2, 2011 - Posted by | canadel lancaster, Lancaster Furniture, Palmdale furniture, thomasville southern California | , , , ,

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