Veterans with Disabilities Table Tennis Camp
Table Tennis Camp for Veterans with Disabilities And Members of the Armed Forces with Disabilities
Courtesy of Loren Williams
Veterans with Disabilities Table Tennis Camp – San Antonio, Texas – March 11-13, 2016
Hosted by San Antonio Table Tennis Club (SATTC)
Gabriel (“Gabe”) Diaz DeLeon hitting with Camp Coach Rocky Wang at Vets camp last weekend.
Norman Everston is shown in the background helping another Vet with the robot
Individual Success Stories – by Norman Everston
Earl Thomas has participated in two prior Veterans with disabilities Table Tennis camps with positive results regarding his physical fitness and skill level of the game. His enthusiastic desire to improve overshadowed his physical handicap and made him more competitive toward opponents. He expressed appreciation about the opportunity to attend the current camp in furthering his goal of becoming a more competent TT player. He stated that the camps have tremendously helped keep him oriented toward the game … which in turn contributes to both his mental and physical health. He added that he feels fortunate to be able to attend these TT camps sponsored by the Armed Forces and is looking forward to the next camp.
David Cromwell had not attended a TT camp for Veterans with disabilities before, but it took just this one to motivate him to go all out for the game. He is excited to play both wheelchair and stand-up opponents at a competitive level and his enthusiasm is infectious. He was pleased with how SATTC club organized and ran the camp with the focus on the help he received for his game. He was quick to take advantage of the new racket and balls that each participant received for attending the camp. Also, he purchased an additional racket for his wife to get her involved in the game with him. Double winners! He and his wife view TT as a game that is well-suited to disabled Vets – especially for him as a wheelchair player. The two of them are really anticipating the next Vets camp.
This is the second TT camp for Veterans with disabilities that Ken Holloway has attended at SATTC. During both camps, Ken did not let his heart disability stop him from working toward improving both his physical fitness and his game skills. He stated more than once that these camps keep him in the game and prepare him to play at a higher skill level. Ken is looking forward to the next camp and was very pleased with how this camp was organized and run by the SATTC club. He expressed his sincere appreciation to the Armed Forces for providing him with this super opportunity and is looking forward to the next camp.
Don Snyder likes to make it known that he is retired Air Force with a lot left in his tank. He jumps at the chance to attend these camps and now has two under his wings. Besides improving his physical wellness, he was pleased with the marked improvement in his forehand and backhand strokes. He commented that the use of the TT robot not only improved his strokes but his muscles memory and physical endurance. He too looks forward to the next camp and thanked all concerned for conducting such a well organized TT camp.
All four of the Vets listed above now participate in organized “club” table tennis at SATTC on a regular basis – and there is a good chance first-time camper David Cromwell soon will join them. In fact, of the nineteen registrants of this March 2016 Vets camp, ten of these Vets now participate regularly in the health, fitness and social / camaraderie benefits of organized table tennis at SATTC club. This increase in ongoing participation undoubtedly can be attributed to the success of this and previous Vets table tennis camps here.