Last night the athletes of Team USA selected their 2012 flag bearer for 2012 -- 5-time Paralympian Scott Danberg, who competes in discus this year and also has competed in shot put. On Thursday morning, US swimmer Trischa Zorn, the most decorated Paralympian of all times - 51 medals, 37 of them gold! - will be inducted into the Paralympics Hall of fame.
These are just a few celebratory notes being sounded on Day -1, the day before the London Games begin.
I can see the pace picking up lots here, with signs everywhere in the streets and smiles all around London. The city and the country really embrace the Paralympics: folks tell me they see the Olympics and Paralympics as one big Games over 6 weeks, just with a short rest in the middle. The clerk in a store I was in today saw my Paralympics tag and volunteered, "I have tickets for Wheelchair Basketball, Swimming AND Athletics," which is what they call Track and Field. She was totally pumped.
It's so different from America where there are 3 weeks of Olympic fever and then the temperature drops (as does the broadcast coverage) way back to "normal," meaning zilch. Of course there are other things preoccupying the media and the US, like the elections and the storm coming ashore from the Caribbean - hope everyone stays safe in the Gulf coast! - but still, I just don't understand it. Since we started MEDAL QUEST 5 months ago, we've heard, over and over again, from new fans: "WHY didn't I know about this? I love sports, why is it so hidden?"
We're doing our best! The video team arrives today and we'll be getting first new videos to you Thursday or Friday. In the meantime, more blogs, more posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages, coming soon.
Judith Vecchione, Executive Producer