Thursday, March 11, 2010

Takashi Hidai, at 75 this year's oldest Paralympian

Takashi Hidai
[Information from the Tokyo Five blog]

Takashi Hidai plays 2nd for Japan  and at 75 years old is not only the oldest person to ever join the Japanese Paralympics Team, but will be the oldest competitor at the Vancouver Games.

When he was 31 years old, he was working in Tokyo as an electrician on a construction site when a crane fell on him, paralyzing him from the waist down.

He credits the love of his wife and daughter (who was three years old at the time) with helping maintain his positive attitude after his tragedy.

He is an accomplished archer, traveling to England in 2005 to compete in the World Archery Championship.

“Being 70 years old (at the time), I was really surprised to make it to the World Championships!” he said.

About five years ago, an acquaintance who participated in a local Wheelchair Curling workshop suggested Mr. Hidai try curling. He doubted that he would be able to maneuver his wheelchair on ice at the age of seventy, let alone compete against people forty or fifty years younger than him, but now excels at it.

Takashi Hidai lost his daughter, whom he said constantly encouraged him with a smile, nineteen years ago from cancer. She was only 28 years old and had just became a mother.

He wishes she was still here to encourage him when he plays at the 2010 Paralympics in Canada next month.

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Speaking of encouragement, here's the support flag that the Asahikawa Cute para-curling team sent to Vancouver. {from Kannane.net via the Para Sports in Japan blog]

1 comment:

tokyo5 said...

Thank you for the link to my blog.

I will be watching the Paralympics on TV here in Tokyo...and supporting Mr. Hidai.