7th September, 2012
2K Plus International Sports Media
One of the more inspiring stories to emerge from the Paralympics is that of Haitian cyclist Gaysli Leon, who sustained spinal cord injures during the devastating 2010 Haiti earthquake, which took the lives of his wife and eight children.
Leon was a late entry to the Games, and was overwhelmed by the reception he got from the fans at his Paralympic race along the road in Brands Hatch on Wednesday.
"I feel like all the biggest athletes in the world," he said. "When I'm racing I have to be focussed on what I'm doing. And to hear the crowd cheering me on, I was so happy."
Aware of the massive global relief effort after the earthquake, he gave thanks to "everybody all over the world" who helped him get to the Paralympics. "I didn't think it would come true," he said, "but by being here I have realised something very, very important."
And he knows that he can be an inspiration to others in his country. "It's very hard for people with disabilities in Haiti," he said, "but I think I have showed they can do a lot of things. This is one of the greatest examples that we can show to them, to inspire them to go further."
And Leon isn't finished yet. After finishing 10th in the H3 individual time trial on Wednesday, he will also participate in Friday's H3 road race.
FOR ALL OF OUR OLYMPIC AND PARALYMPIC COVERAGE,
HEAD TO OUR SPECIAL OLYMPICS 2012 PAGE HERE... |