Let the Games Begin

For a while, it looked like the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics might not happen at all. A couple of months after the 2020 Games were postponed to this year, a poll of Tokyo residents showed that more than half the city favored outright cancellation. A Japanese gubernatorial candidate urged that the Games be called off. Even the head of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, acknowledged last summer that the Tokyo Games might never occur.

But as of this writing, the plan is for the Paralympics to start on August 24, 2021. Unless and until we hear otherwise, Amplitude will be devoting coverage all year to the dozens of limb-different athletes vying for medals with Team USA. In addition to regular articles in the magazine, we’ll have ongoing updates at livingwithamplitude.com and on our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram feeds. And once the torch is lit and the competition’s underway, we hope to bring you exclusive content directly from Tokyo.

To get the ball rolling, here’s a quick introduction to five amputees who are vying this year to compete in their first Paralympics. They’re not as recognizable as amputee stars such as Blake Leeper, Melissa Stockwell, Hunter Woodhall, and Jessica Long—not yet, anyway. But they’ve all excelled in international competition, demonstrating the potential not only to make the team but to contend for medals.

MeiMei White, swimmer

Gold

2019 Parapan Games

2019 World Paraswimming World Series

Kevan Hueftle, sprinter

Gold

2019 Parapan Games

Silver

2019 World Para Athletics Championships

Noelle Lambert, sprinter

4th place

2019 World Para Athletics Championships

Matthew Torres, swimmer

Gold

2019 Parapan Games

2019 World Paraswimming World Series

Ezra Frech, high jump

Silver

2019 Parapan Games

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