Jessica Long – Photo Courtesy: Arena
The United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) today announced the 240-member 2020 U.S. Paralympic Team, including six guides for visually-impaired athletes, that will compete at the upcoming Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020. Following the year-long postponement due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Opening Ceremony will take place Tuesday, Aug. 24, with competition beginning Aug. 25 and concluding Sunday, Sept. 6.
“At its core, the Paralympic Games represent inclusivity and the infinite possibility of sport,” said Sarah Hirshland, CEO United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee. “This group of athletes represents Team USA at their best. They are strong, resilient and ready to make you proud.”
The 2020 U.S. roster features 129 returning Paralympians, including three six-time Paralympians, 10 five-time Paralympians, 14 four-time Paralympians and 105 athletes making their Paralympic debut. The delegation holds a collective 233 medals from 51 Paralympic champions.
“After an unparalleled year, our incredible roster of 234 athletes and six guides are ready to show the world the athleticism and determination of Team USA on the Tokyo stage,” said Julie Dussliere, United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee chief of Paralympic sport. “We can’t wait to cheer them on as they live out their dreams in front of the nation and the globe.”
The squad is led by 23-time Paralympic medalist Jessica Long (swimming) and 17-time medalist Tatyana McFadden (track and field) each looking to further etch their name in history. Additional American stars and multiple medalists include Para-cyclist Oksana Masters, wheelchair racer Cheri Madsen and wheelchair tennis athlete David Wagner with eight medals each. Wheelchair racers Amanda McGrory and Raymond Martin, and paratriathlete Brad Snyder will also head to Tokyo with seven previous Paralympic podium appearances.
The Paralympic program will feature 22 sports in contention, including the addition of badminton and taekwondo, which will make their debut in Tokyo. The third largest sporting event in the world, the Paralympic Games remains the world’s biggest event for driving social inclusion.
Here are the swimmers participating:
Ahalya Lettenberger (Glen Ellyn, Illinois)
Anastasia Pagonis (Long Island, New York)
Cailin Currie (Salem, Massachusetts)
Colleen Young (Saint Louis, Missouri)
David Abrahams (Havertown, Pennsylvania)
Elizabeth Marks (Colorado springs, Colorado)
Elizabeth Smith (Muncie, Indiana)
Evan Austin (Terre Haute, Indiana)
Gia Pergolini (Atlanta, Georgia)
Hannah Aspden (Raleigh, North Carolina)
Haven Shepherd (Carthage, Missouri)
Jamal Hill (Inglewood, California)
Jessica Long (Baltimore, Maryland)
Joseph Peppersack (Hopewell, Virginia)
Paralympic athlete Mallory Weggemann. Photo Courtesy: Nelson Books
Julia Gaffney (Mayflower, Arkansas)
Keegan Knott (Lake Villa, Illinois)
Lawrence Sapp (Waldorf, Maryland)
Leanne Smith (Salem, Massachusetts)
Madelyn White (Orlando, Florida)
Makayla Nietzel (Crystal Lake, Illinois)
Mallory Weggemann (Eagan,Minnesota)
Martha Ruether (Allegany, New York)
Matthew Torres (Ansonia, Connecticut)
McClain Hermes (Dacula, Georgia)
McKenzie Coan (Clarkesville, Georgia)
Mikaela Jenkins (Evansville, Indiana)
Morgan Stickney (Cary, North Carolina)
Natalie Sims (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Parker Egbert (Greenwood, South Carolina)
Robert Griswold (Freehold, New Jersey)
Rudolph Garcia-Tolson (Colorado Springs, Colorado)
Sophia Herzog (Fairplay, Colorado)
Summer Schmit (Stillwater, Minnesota)
Zach Shattuck (Mt. Airy, Maryland)
NBCUniversal will showcase an unprecedented 1,200 hours of Paralympic programming of the Tokyo Games presented by Toyota including the network’s first-ever primetime broadcasts, more than 200 hours of TV coverage among NBC, NBCSN and the Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA, and over 1,000 hours of live streaming across 19 sports on NBC’s digital platforms. The coverage showcases the network’s continued commitment for the Paralympic Movement which has grown from 70 hours for Rio 2016 and 5.5 total hours for London 2012.
— The above press release was posted by Swimming World in conjunction with US Olympic and Paralympic Committee. For press releases and advertising inquiries please contact Advertising@SwimmingWorld.com.