2018 Warrior Games
Keywords:Warrior Games, athlete classification, Paralympic competition format, family friendly
The United States Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs, Colorado, welcomed over 300 athletes to the 2018 Warrior Games. Each branch of the United States military was represented along with warriors from the United Kingdom, the Australian Defense Force, and the Canadian Armed Forces. This Paralympic style competition featured competition in archery, cycling, track and field, shooting, powerlifting, sitting volleyball, and wheelchair basketball. Over 70 technology professionals helped bring the Warrior Games to those attending with live closed-circuit broadcasts to each of the major competition venues across the USAFA campus. More than 34,000 people attended the Opening Ceremonies in Falcon Stadium, capped off with performances by Kelly Clarkson and comedian Jon Stewart. Family was central to these Games, as attendance was free, and a special Expo area was dedicated for interaction with sport equipment, vendors for sport organizations, and other adapted sport activities (i.e., wheelchair rugby, wheelchair tennis for adults, youth, and children). The U.S. Air Force won the most gold medals with 70, followed by the U.S. Marine Corp with 44 and U.S. Navy with 41. There were over 475 total medals awarded across all U.S. military branches. The 2018 Warrior Games were competitor tough and family oriented; a quote from former NFL great Herschel Walker summed it up the best, “Family is key to these athletes’ success...we have to do more for these veterans…family must always be included.”
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