'It's time to give back': Sudburians take part in the Invictus Games
As the Invictus Games get underway in Toronto, several people from Sudbury, Ont., are getting ready to compete or help out at the event.
The games, founded by Prince Harry, will be held in Toronto Sept. 23-30. It's the first time the competition for wounded and injured soldiers and veterans will be held in Canada.
Sudbury's Steve Daniel was with the Royal Canadian Regiment for 14 years until he was partially paralyzed after a hard free fall parachute landing. Last year, he competed at the games in Orlando in rowing and won a silver medal.
"I've rehabilitated through sport through my journey and going to Invictus was a bit of a homecoming for me, a reunion with the military and soldiers that I once served with," he said.
"We had a remarkable experience down there."
This year, Daniel will represent Canada on the court as he's part of the basketball team.
"Basketball of course is my first love. I'm a huge NBA fan," he said.
"I was really jealous last year watching the basketball and the wheelchair rugby. We didn't have enough members to put in a team so I was thrilled this year to be able to play basketball."
Sport as rehabilitation
John Roberts from Sudbury is also at the games, but not as an athlete. His role is to be a starter for the track events.
"It's going to be exciting," Roberts said. "It's going to be very thrilling to be amongst people that went out and protected our country and put their lives on the line."
Thomas Merritt of Sudbury was invited to go to the games and work with the indoor rowing program. He's also volunteering with the social media program at the event.
"Sport can be a huge part of rehabilitation. We've got hundreds of athletes from so many different countries that are using sport as part of their recovery," he said.
"These people have given an enormous amount to us and it's time to give back."