Comcast NBCUniversal Sponsors 40th National Veterans Wheelchair Games
At Comcast NBCUniversal, we recognize the resilient spirit of the military community, particularly when it comes to the 26 percent of veterans living with a service-connected disability. We also know that much like the military, sports have the power to bring people of all backgrounds together for a shared purpose, and adaptive sports play a large role in promoting healing, recovery, and well-being among disabled veterans.
That’s why our company was honored to help sponsor the 40th National Veterans Wheelchair Games, in New York City from August 7-14. Presented by the Department of Veterans Affairs and Paralyzed Veterans of America, the event demonstrates the resilient character of veterans and promotes inclusivity for all people with disabilities.
The Games are an extraordinary example of the hard work, determination, and courage that define the military community.
The Wheelchair Games is open to all U.S. veterans with spinal cord injuries, amputations, multiple sclerosis, or other central neurological conditions who require a wheelchair for athletic competition.
Every year, hundreds of veterans from across the country compete across 20 adaptive sports, including wheelchair basketball, swimming, powerlifting, and more. This year, athletes also had the option to compete from home, given concerns with the ongoing pandemic.
Comcast NBCUniversal’s Military and Veteran Affairs team is sponsoring the nine-ball tournament during the Games.
“It’s an honor to be part of an experience that connects and empowers veterans from across the country,” said Rebecca Gray, Executive Director of Military and Veteran Affairs at Comcast NBCUniversal. “The Games are an extraordinary example of the hard work, determination, and courage that define the military community.”
Tom Wlodkowski, VP of Accessibility at Comcast Cable, further acknowledged the Games and what they mean for veteran athletes.
“The National Veterans Wheelchair Games recognize the strength and resilience of veterans who have given so much for our country. They highlight the importance of adaptive sports to help enhance independence,” Wlodkowski said.
The Department of Veterans Affairs launched the Wheelchair Games in 1981 with just seven events. In 1985, Paralyzed Veterans of America joined the VA to help expand the event’s mission and reach.
"Every year, our members look forward to this event for the competition and camaraderie. For many of them, the Wheelchair Games is a turning point, when they go from being housebound to being active and involved in their communities," said Jennifer Purser, Senior Associate Director of PVA Sports, Paralyzed Veterans of America. "Meanwhile, many athletes return to not only compete but also to mentor newly injured veterans – these are just a few of the many reasons the Wheelchair Games are so special."
Comcast is committed to supporting adaptive sports and disabled athletes and will next do so on the world stage with the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games kicking off on August 24.