What an honor to have the 1st Marine Division Band perform “Hop To It!” as part of their annual concert series! SSgt. Alexander Panos, Marine Musician of the Year (2015), conducted his own arrangement of Sarah’s original composition.
Officers of the 1st Marine Division Band presented Sarah and Hannah with a commemorative framed score of “Hop To It!”.
Thanks to SSgt. Panos and CWO3 Stephanie Wire for two memorable evenings.
And thanks to our new patrons for their support!
We are delighted to announce that the 1st Marine Division Band will be performing the Ajax Bound for Glory theme song “Hop To It!” as part of their upcoming concert series, April 4th and 5th at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido. Bring the whole family along for an uplifting, toe-tapping evening of music – you’ll see why these Marine musicians were our inspiration for Ajax!
Admission is free, though tickets are required (and going fast!) Please visit http://artcenter.org/event/marine-band/2017-04-04/ for more information.
We hope to see you there!
Elam’s Hallmark, Encinitas
(Across from Barnes & Noble)
1084 N. El Camino Real
Encinitas, CA 92024
“We really enjoyed Ajax Bound for Glory–such a great story for children. Thank you for reading it at your event. Jacob enjoyed it!”
The D. Family
“Dear Ajax! You are a star bound for a huge following!”
Heart-felt thanks to all who came out for the book party on Saturday! We were delighted to have your company as we celebrated our publication. There is yet much in store for Ajax, and we will, as he likes to say, “Hop to it!”
If you have photos from the event, please share them on social media!
Flags waved. Fans cheered. And wounded warriors from around the world proved once again that they would not be conquered by their injuries. As hundreds of adaptive athletes participated last week in the second Invictus Games, the overwhelming message was the importance of integrative healing—body, mind, and spirit. Athlete after athlete shared their story of how adaptive sports has played a major role in all aspects of their recovery. From renewing camaraderie and achieving goals, to putting their problems in perspective and ultimately inspiring others, competing in adaptive sports is giving wounded warriors a new lease on life.
Any service member knows the camaraderie that comes as a natural part of being in the military. But what happens when that “brotherhood” is broken, as in the case of injury? For many a wounded warrior, the time when they need the most support is often when they feel the most isolated. Getting involved in adaptive sports affords them the companionship and team spirit that is missed when injury removes a service member from active duty. Camaraderie on the playing field is as important to a warrior’s recovery as it was to mission success on the battleground.
“If you can think it, you can do it,” answered Denmark’s Maurice Manuel, when asked how adaptive sports has impacted his recovery. The combat translator served six tours in the Middle East before losing his leg to an IED. Recovery is marked by achievement, from literal “baby steps” on a new prosthetic to relearning how to write with the other hand. Setting goals becomes a necessary part of living. How can adaptive sports help? Quite simply, as another Invictus athlete quipped, “It got me off the couch”. Physical fitness aids long-term recovery. But perhaps more importantly, adaptive sports helps the wounded warrior stay mentally strong, as they set – and achieve – big-picture goals that they otherwise might not have considered. The determination it takes to rebuild a broken body for competitive sports spurs an adaptive athlete on to achievement in other areas as they transition into civilian life.
Competing in adaptive sports takes an athlete’s focus off of his or her individual hardships, and shifts their attention to team work. The group may be comprised of athletes from varying backgrounds, branches, and degrees of injury, but team spirit trumps individual differences. Competition becomes an effective outlet for the pent-up energy and emotions resulting from years of painful recovery. It puts things in perspective: there will always be a teammate whose injuries are worse than one’s own, their story more horrific, their capacity more limited. Yet on the playing field, strengths and weaknesses are leveled as teammates combine forces toward a common goal.
“I want to be an inspiration to other people,” said Tim Payne, the double amputee who, with literally half a body, swam his way to gold in the men’s 100m freestyle. Success in adaptive sports is a crowning moment for the wounded warrior; the blood, sweat, and tears that got them there were worth it. And for the devoted family and friends who have been by their warrior’s side through thick and thin, victory is the fruit of their labors. But it goes even further. The unconquerable spirit exhibited by an adaptive athlete is immensely inspiring to fellow human beings who are experiencing their own set of trials. Maybe their circumstances are worlds apart, but it gives them the courage and determination to press on, to reach the other side—unconquered.
Copyright © 2016 Sarah E. Dautel