VANCOUVER - Imagine training for years for a single event - a defining moment that could put you in the history books as one of the world’s best. One year ago today, 22 British Columbian athletes woke up knowing that special moment had arrived.Over the next 10 days, they would be put to the ultimate test - the culmination of intense training, discipline, sacrifice, pain and passion. Supporters were nothing short of wowed by their performance. Of Canada’s 19 medals in the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games, 14 went to British Columbians.
Touted as the best ever, the 2010 Paralympics were part of a magical time in British Columbia that helped unite, inspire and capture the imagination of millions of people around the globe.
B.C.’s Paralympians were honoured today at Jack Poole Plaza, where the cauldron flame was lit in celebration of the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games. Stephanie Cadieux, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development, Mary McNeil, Minister of Citizens’ Services, and Canadian Paralympic Committee past president Carla Qualtrough spoke to athletes and the public.
The athletes included Para-Alpine Skiers Lauren Woolstencroft, Karolina Wisniewska, Josh
Dueck and Lindsay Debou (guide of Viviane Forest), and Wheelchair Curlers Darryl Neighbour, Sonja Gaudet, Jim Armstrong and Ina Forrest. Several MLAs attended the event, featuring a Wheelchair Curling demonstration.
Carla Qualtrough, past president, Canadian Paralympic Committee -
“As a result of the incredible success achieved by our 2010 medallists, more Canadians with a disability than ever before are aware of the opportunity to play sports. This legacy of greater
awareness will lead to increased participation and inclusion in local, provincial and national
sport programs. This is critical if Canada is to continue to create Paralympic champions. I am proud to be standing beside such great athletes who have shown the rest of the world that Canada is the world’s Paralympic leading nation.”
- 2010 was the first time Canada hosted the Winter Paralympic Games.
- The program included five sports: Para-Alpine Skiing, Biathlon, Para-Nordic Skiing,
Wheelchair Curling and Sledge Hockey.
- Lauren Woolstencroft of North Vancouver became the first Canadian Paralympian to win
five gold medals at a single Winter Games in 2010. She was recently recognized as “Best of BC” at the 45th Sport BC Athlete of the Year awards.
- 502 athletes from 20 countries competed in the Games.
- Canadian athletes received 19 medals, achieving its goal of being ranked among the top
three nations in the world in terms of number of gold medals.
About the Canadian Paralympic Committee
- The Canadian Paralympic Committee is a non-profit, private organization with 46 member
sports organizations dedicated to strengthening the Paralympic Movement.
- The Canadian Paralympic Committee’s vision is to be the world’s leading Paralympic nation. Its mission is to lead the development of a sustainable Paralympic sport system in Canada to enable athletes to reach the podium at the Paralympic Games.
- By supporting Canadian Paralympic athletes and promoting their success, the Canadian Paralympic Committee inspires all Canadians with a disability to get involved in sport through programs delivered by its member organizations.
For more information, visit: www.paralympic.ca