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Marines Seek Repeat Win at 2013 Warrior Games

 

By Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Heidi Agostini
Marine Corps Wounded Warrior Regiment

If the 2013 Warrior Games had a more regal feel than previous games, it’s because Prince Harry, or Capt. Henry Wales, attended the opening ceremony yesterday at the Olympic Training Center here.

Click photo for screen-resolution image
Prince Harry applauds the Silent Drill Platoon from Marine Barracks Washington, while they perform at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., May 11, 2013. The platoon performed following the opening ceremony of the 2013 Warrior Games, a Paralympic-style competition where more than 260 wounded, ill or injured service members and veterans will compete for gold in archery, swimming, wheelchair basketball, sitting volleyball, track and field and cycling. The Warrior Games give participants an opportunity to fine-tune their athletic skills, strengthen their bodies and support each other through their recovery process. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Scott Reel
  

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

The British royal joined more than 260 wounded, ill or injured service members and veterans in kicking off the Warrior Games, a Paralympic-style competition that’s been dominated by the Marine team since the event began in 2010.

Athletes from all U.S. military services will compete with more than 35 service members and veterans from the British armed forces.

U.S. Navy Lt. Brad Snyder, who competed in the 2012 Warrior Games and went off to win a gold medal at the London 2012 Paralympics, lit the ceremonial cauldron to start the this year’ Warrior Games. Snyder was injured while deployed to Afghanistan in September 2011.

The 50-strong Marine team arrived in Colorado, looking to further continue its winning ways and holding onto the Chairman’s Cup, lightheartedly known as the “Commandant’s Cup” since the Marine team keeps winning. Marine Corps Maj. Jonathan Disbro held the Ultimate Champion title in 2011 and 2012. This year, nine athletes will compete for the title of Ultimate Champion, a pentathlon-style event.

The athletes will compete in archery, cycling, wheelchair basketball, shooting, swimming, track and field and sitting volleyball. Athlete’s injuries and illnesses vary from amputations, spinal cord injuries, post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury. The Warrior Games’ mission is to elevate wounded, ill and injured service member’s abilities through athletic competition and to foster healthy competition between all branches of military service, both national and international.

Navy Adm. James A. Winnefeld Jr., vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, spoke during the opening ceremony and said he and his wife look forward to the competition every year.

“Our nation’s wounded, ill and injured are very special people to us, and this is the highlight of our year, every year,” Winnefeld said. “You warriors are the best of the best. You’re here because of your willingness to overcome challenges of illness, injury — both seen and unseen, coupled with the challenges that any superior athlete must overcome and achieve in greatness.

“Your heroism and determination are an inspiration,” the admiral continued. “Whenever I’m having a bad day or I’m facing a seemingly insurmountable challenge, I just think of you, and my day becomes a very nice day.”

Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James F. Amos and his wife, Bonnie, met with the All-Marine Warrior Games team following the opening ceremony. The Amos’ have long been supporters of the Warrior Games and encourage their Marines to dominate again for the fourth year in a row.

“I’m reminded of last year, and the year before when we rolled out here and watched the Marines,” Amos said. “We walked out of there last year and the chief of Army pulled me aside and said, ‘That’s the last time the Marines are gonna win.’ I just looked at him and laughed.”

Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps Micheal P. Barrett provided a few, yet motivating, words for his Marine athletes.

“There will be a four-peat. Go win,” he said.

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About Edited by Susan Bainbridge

At age 6, Susan was destined to be a journalist and photographer.  In 1980, Susan founded Bainbridge News and The Bainbridge Chronicle Newspaper. Bainbridge News specializes in Military and National Politics, including Military Funerals and Burials and Political Funerals and Burials.  Susan has covered the White House, the Pentagon and Capitol Hill. She has covered every president from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama. Recognized for her versatility, Susan has also covered finance, crime, civil rights events, marches, sports, musical events and more. In 1990, she established Bainbridge Photography, an On-Location photography company. In addition to military and political events, including Military and Political funerals and burials, Bainbridge Photography expanded into covering ALL funerals and burials, receptions, weddings, real estate, inventory, insurance, portrait, head shot, pets, fire and Hazmat.  Miss Bainbridge believes in going the extra mile. "My Clients always come first." In 1980, Susan began her career in Washington, D.C., working for WMZQ Radio as a reporter and guest hostess from 1980 to 1985. Intrigued by radio, Susan wanted to write, freelancing for radio, television and print newspapers, including AP, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Northern Virginia Sun, The Press-Republican and The Bainbridge Chronicle (established by Susan Bainbridge). In 1986, Susan worked at WDCA-TV Channel 20 as a guest hostess for "Eye On Washington." From 1990 to 1994, Susan reported and anchored for "The Arlington Weekly News." Additionally, she produced a segment for the G. Gordon Liddy Radio Show. A prolific writer, while in high school in 1977, Bainbridge wrote an episode for NBC's "Little House on The Prairie" entitled "Laura's Best Friend." Though the show's producers did not use the script then, NBC producers encouraged Susan to pursue a writing and journalism career. Susan is a member of the National Press Club, the National Press Photographer's Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. Susan Bainbridge's recognitions include from former Presidents Ronald Reagan, George Herbert Walker Bush and Bill Clinton, former First Lady Nancy Reagan, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, the late actor Lorne Greene, among many others. BAINBRIDGE NEWS was founded in 1980 by Susan Bainbridge (a sixth generation writer), a third generation journalist, a first generation photographer and a fourth generation entrepreneur. She is the first generation to establish a news business. Bainbridge News is dedicated in honor of Miss Bainbridge's late grandfather and idol, Mark S. Watson (The Baltimore Sun editor and war correspondent from 1920 to his death in 1966).

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