JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii — The 2017 Pacific Regional Trials concluded with a ceremony Nov. 10 at Ford Island, Hawaii, overlooking the USS Arizona memorial.
During the weeklong competition, about 80 wounded, ill, or injured Soldiers and veterans from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, and the Pacific region trained and competed in eight adaptive sporting events at Schofield Barracks — swimming, track, field, shooting, archery, cycling, sitting volleyball and wheelchair basketball.
Top competitors from the regional events will be invited to participate in Army Trials 2018, and from there, have the opportunity to compete and progress to the Department of Defense Warrior Games.
“It seems very fitting that we hold the closing ceremony right here at this location, this very historic site,” said Lt. Col. Clyde Hill, Warrior Transition Battalion-Hawaii commander.
The final resting place of more than 1,100 Sailors and Marines, the USS Arizona memorial serves as a reminder of those who made the ultimate sacrifice during the attacks on Pearl Harbor, and also of those who continued the fight in World War II — a war that claimed the lives of more than 400,000 Americans and injured many others.
“Today we benefit from the progress of our predecessors,” Hill said. “Our generation of service members has access to world-class programs and services that those before us did not. The (Army) Warrior Care and Transition program is one such example.”
After becoming wounded, ill, or injured, service members often experience many challenges during recovery and transition, including at least six months of complex medical care.
The Warrior Games and the other adaptive sports competitions, such as Pacific Regional Trials, emphasize the importance of adaptive reconditioning activities in daily recovery.
Service members and veterans who use adaptive sports as part of their rehabilitation process benefit from maintaining active and healthy lifestyles. They develop leadership and camaraderie, and also recognize that recovery is achievable by focusing on ability rather than inability.
During the ceremony, Col. Andrew Barr, Tripler Army Medical Center commander, also provided remarks.
“From the stories that we heard this week, what you end up getting is a sense of accomplishment and a sense of resiliency,” he said. “Through your effort, through your struggle, through your accomplishments, some of you rebelling in victory with medals, but all of you rebelling in your accomplishments and the ability to finish the race; that’s what the Warrior Games are all about.”