Ray Hennagir joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 2004 after he graduated from high school. During his service, he was deployed in the Middle East where he lost both of his legs and four left fingers due to an improvised explosive device (IED) accident. He was medically discharged and spent 2 years going through rehab. Through a recreational therapist, Hennagir learned about wheelchair basketball and decided to give it a try as a part of his recovery. After playing wheelchair basketball for 12 years, he was recruited to play rugby. He quickly went from playing for the Austin, Texas team, to The Texas Stampede, and finally Team USA. He has competed in the Wounded Warrior games, where he earned four gold medals, as well as the 2019 Parapan American Games, where his team also took home a gold medal.
Away from the field:
Hennagir attended the University of Texas. He stays active outside of training and competitions and is always looking for his next challenge.
In their own words:
“Wheelchair basketball kind of brought back a sense of normalcy to the recovery instead of just going to a physical therapist or an occupational therapist and doing their exercises all day. It kind of brought me back to being like a kid again, which I guess is more about having fun.”
“I head a rec therapist who was playing basketball twice a week. I was using a power wheelchair at the time because I didn’t know I could use [my left] hand to push a wheelchair. [The therapist] kept pushing me to go try wheelchair basketball to just break the normal cycle of doing regular PT and OT. I just kind of fell in love with that and found out I can just push a regular chair.”
“Disability is a state of mind.”
Team USA: “For U.S. Marine Veteran Ray Hennagir, Wheelchair Sports brought A Sense of Normalcy During Recovery”
Wheelchair Sports Federation Media: “Raymond Hennagir III: Corporal Punishment”
- Sport: Rugby
- Limb Difference:
- DOB: 7/25/86
- Residence: Deptford, NJ
- College: Marine Corps
- Previous Games: 2019
- Classification: 3.5