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Yosemite National Park is hosting a multi-day event in which thirteen disabled United States Military Veterans will climb and hike several iconic peaks in Yosemite National Park. Paradox Sports organized the climbs and hikes, in conjunction with the National Park Service (NPS), for the second annual event. The disabled veterans, along with Yosemite veterans and Park Rangers, have begun climbs and hikes to iconic peaks such as El Capitan, Royal Arches, and Ranger Rock, with the intention of reaching the respective summits on Thursday, September 11. The event is designed to honor all veterans and commemorate the tragic events of September 11, 2001.
The trip is organized by Paradox Sports, a non-profit organization that creates physical adaptive sport communities. Paradox hosts hiking, climbing, and water-based adaptive programs and is building a network of inspired and able individuals and organizations through its new adaptive climbing curriculum. This Yosemite trip is one of five yearly veteran-specific trips offered by Paradox Sports for veterans with amputated limbs, PTSD, paraplegia, or any other disability.
“We are honored to have Paradox Sports bring these American heroes to the park for this climbing event,” stated Don Neubacher, Yosemite Superintendent. “We couldn’t think of a better venue for these veterans to commemorate such an impactful day in American history.”
Yosemite National Park has an active Special Emphasis Program for veterans of the armed services. The park currently employs over 100 veterans, representing all Divisions within the park. The program is a part of the Equal Opportunity Committee.
The event was kicked off this morning with a gathering of Yosemite veterans, employees, and disabled veterans who came to the park with Paradox Sports. After brief remarks, the veterans divided into groups to begin their ascents. Certificates of Appreciation from Congressman Tom McClintock, who represents the park, were presented to each of the participants. DNC Parks & Resorts at Yosemite, Inc., the park’s primary concessioner, provided a welcome dinner for the event participants. They also provided a monetary donation to assist with travel expenses.