A racer for Middlebury College, Chris Waddell broke his back in a ski accident in 1988. Within two months he bravely returned to school and, shortly thereafter, began ski racing again, single-handedly revolutionizing the sport of mono-skiing. Waddell is the most decorated Paralympian, winning 12 medals for both skiing and track racing. And while he serves as an inspiration for many, Waddell is more interested in shattering stereotypes connected to the term “disabled.”
This week, Waddell, and an eight person team, will attempt to ascend the highest freestanding mountain on the planet—Mt. Kiliminjaro. Waddell, equipped with a one-of-a-kind rig called a Bomba (Swahili for “cooler than cool”), will tackle the 19,341 feet of elevation one crank at a time on his handcycle, propelling himself over boulders, across scree, and up steep terrain with his arms.
“One Revolution” is Waddell’s motto for his unassisted climb, which will also be documented by a film crew.
“We’re hoping to change the way people view people in a wheelchair, the way people view me and other people like me,” explains Waddell.
In addition, Waddell ’s foundation will deliver the gift of mobility by donating funds to a local wheelchair manufacturer in Tanzania.
Wandermelon applauds Chris Waddell’s incredible tenacity and vision. Whether he makes it to the top or not we think he is bomba for trying and spreading such an important message!