Warrior Games for wounded military personnel ends, with big plans for next year's event
The inaugural Warrior Games for wounded or ill military personnel ended Friday, with organizers already talking about an even bigger competition next year.
Among the 200 participants were 10 personnel from Naval Medical Center San Diego, including Army Sgt. 1st Class Jacque Keeslar, pictured above competing in the finals of the seated basketball competition. Keeslar lost both legs to a roadside bomb in Iraq in 2006.
A joint project of the Department of Defense and the U.S. Olympic Committee, the Warrior Games are an extension of the program to use sports to help injured personnel recover from their combat traumas, physical and emotional.
Naval Medical Center San Diego is one of the military's premier centers for treating the severely wounded: 65 Marines and 27 soldiers are living in new barracks adjacent to the center and receiving daily therapy.
The games, with participants from all military services, were held at the Olympic training facility at Colorado Springs, Colo. and the Air Force Academy. The Marine team won the seated basketball gold medal, besting the Army 45-14 in the finals.
-- Tony Perry in San Diego
Photo: Army Sgt. 1st Class Jacque Keeslar competes in the seated basketball finals. Credit: Department of Defense