Sunday, March 7, 2010

Greg Westlake

Dear Readers

On February the 28th Katie and I went to Kimberley to interview the Sledge Hockey team. It was so amazing to see them working so hard at a sport they love so much. When Katie and I met them after the game they were very warm and welcoming. I interviewed Greg Westlake and Jean Labonté. They were very willing to share their stories. Greg Westlake is 23 years. His hometown is in Oakville Ontario. He is 6’2 with his prosthetics on. A birth defect led to amputation of both legs below the knee at 18 months of age. He joined the Sledge Hockey team in 2003. His number is 12 and he is a forward. He told me that the hardest thing he learned when he first started Sledge Hockey was balance. He said that he used to play stand up hockey with his prosthetics and he thought he would be a pro at Sledge Hockey. But he realized that it was much harder than it looks. He had to learn how to play hockey all over again. Greg said that he wanted to follow in his older brothers footsteps. I asked him what are some positives of Sledge Hockey? He said just being able to work with the team and being able to go to the Paralympics. “I’m very excited to go to the Paralympics. It’s a huge honor. I hope we win”. He told me. The team gave Greg the nickname “Hollywood” because he was in the media so much. But he told me his life was not glamorous. After a game he showers, eats and goes to bed. He thanks his family for being supportive of him and is glad that they will be there to watch him at the Paralympics.

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