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Mon Nov 12, 2018, 06:49 PM

Inside Lacrosse: How Wheelchair Lacrosse Saved My Life

"I asked God: 'Please donít let me die like this. Please let me see another day.'"

The Players' Issue: How Wheelchair Lacrosse Saved My Life

Tuesday November 6th, 2018 8:50am

By Ryan Beale

Beale is a former Lynchburg lacrosse player and is now a member of the Maryland Thunder wheelchair lacrosse team. He recently competed against Johns Hopkins in an early-November exhibition held in the Baltimore suburbs. This appears as part of The Players' Issue, which features Kyle Harrison on the cover. Subscribe here.

During a serious life event, we search for answers and solutions as to why and how we can overcome the battle ahead. The game of lacrosse was introduced to me at a young age, and I quickly learned lacrosse was the right sport for me. Iíve been so fortunate to play on some awesome teams through travel ball, Junior Olympics, high school, summer leagues and college. The bonds made with those teammates last forever and are what helped me get through the darkest of times.

My junior year of college was like no one could imagine. After a long and grueling season of fallball, fall break meant some relaxing time home, visiting old friends and family. One late rainy night traveling back to my parentsí house, my Jeep slid off the road hitting a culvert pipe. As my Jeep rolled over I was ejected from the driver side window and thrown 15 feet, landing a foot away from a telephone pole. Never really losing consciousness during the accident, my life flashed before my eyes as I was lying there in the wet cold grass. I asked God: ďPlease donít let me die like this. Please let me see another day.Ē

I thought about my family, friends, never raising my own family, graduating college and, of course, no more lacrosse. Iíll never forget the moment laying in hospital bed when doctor came in and told me I would never walk again and that I was lucky to even be alive. After one month in the ICU, I was fortunate enough to get transferred to one of the top-notch rehabilitation facilities for Spinal Cord Injuries in the country: Shepherd Center in Atlanta. This facility teaches one how to cope and handle day-to-day tasks as a quadriplegic.

Of course, there still was a void. It was not until then I found wheelchair lacrosse that I finally found what was missing. Wheelchair lacrosse is an up-and-coming sport in the disabled community. In 2009, Wheelchair Lacrosse USA was founded and started doing clinics to spread the new perspective game. I quickly started doing research as to where the closest team was in my area, and I came across a wheelchair lacrosse clinic in Maryland. Ever since that clinic, I have been hooked on this new perspective of lacrosse. Since Iíve found wheelchair lacrosse Iíve been all over the U.S. playing in clinics, tournaments and exhibition games. My wheelchair lacrosse team, Maryland Thunder, just finished competing at Nationals this year in Denver, finishing third out of 10 teams.

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Reply Inside Lacrosse: How Wheelchair Lacrosse Saved My Life (Original post)
mahatmakanejeeves Nov 2018 OP
underpants Nov 2018 #1

Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2018, 06:52 PM

1. Cool story

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