LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — The opening ceremony for the Warrior Games at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports at Walt Disney World Resort kicks off Friday night.
Nearly 300 athletes representing the U.S. military and ally nations such as Canada and Ukraine will compete.
The Warrior Games are meant to celebrate the resiliency of active-duty and veteran U.S. military service members who are ill, injured or wounded.
Some wounds are visible; others are not.
Athlete Jarrett Cooper said he has a back injury from “overuse” after he spent more than 20 years in the navy. He’s participating in four events.
“It’s a busy schedule, but it gets your mind off the negative,” Cooper said. “We are all in this together.”
Athletes compete in adaptive sporting events such as wheelchair basketball, indoor rowing, wheelchair rugby, sitting volleyball and more.
Kenneth Brown will be competing in cycling. He was injured during a deployment in Iraq. He’s had a knee replacement and three surgeries on his spine. He couldn’t be more proud to participate in the Warrior Games.
“To be here and compete is everything,” Brown said.
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