OTTAWA – If you turned off your Twitter, Facebook and other social feeds over the Holiday Season, you may have missed some more accolades accorded to Canada’s Para athletes in various year-end reviews.
Charlottetown’s Guardian newspaper names Mark Arendz its Newsmaker of the Year
The 28-year-old Hartsville, P.E.I native burned up the course at the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games as he skied, shot and sprinted his way to a Canadian record six medals (gold, two silver, three bronze) at the Paralympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang.
In honour of his outstanding year, The Guardian selected Arendz as its 2018 Newsmaker of the Year. Wayne Thibodeau, managing editor of The Guardian, says Arendz was a clear choice for the newspaper’s recognition. Not only was it the decision of The Guardian’s editorial board, it was also the choice of online readers in the newspaper’s newsmaker poll, added Thibodeau.
“Mark Arendz is such an incredible inspiration to all of us,’’ said Thibodeau. “The challenges Mark faced at a very early age did not stop him from reaching the highest level in sport. And what is most exciting is that we have not seen the last of Mark Arendz as he prepares for the 2022 Paralympics in Beijing.’’
Elisabeth Walker-Young among the newest appointees to the Order of Canada
Both on and off the playing field, Elisabeth Walker-Young has forged a path for Para athletes and for women in sport. As a Para swimmer she won six medals over four Paralympic Games and was a 13-year national team member.
In 2015 she was Canada’s Chef de Mission at the 2015 Parapan American Games in Toronto. Just three years earlier, she was assistant Chef at the 2012 Paralympic Games in London. She was also part of the organizing committee for the Vancouver Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2010. Today she is the Manager of Programs for the Canucks Autism Network in Vancouver.
Brian McKeever’s exploits in PyeongChang named top Americas Moment
Canada’s Brian McKeever left PyeongChang 2018 with three gold medals to become the most successful cross-country skier in Paralympic history. He now holds 13 titles across five Games.
McKeever´s major achievement came in No. 1 in the Americas Paralympic Committee's Top 10 Moments of 2018. In PyeongChang, McKeever, guided by Graham Nishikawa and Russell Kennedy, won all three cross-country vision impaired races for a second consecutive Games.
Mollie Jepsen’s stunning Games debut at number-five in top Americas Moment
At just 19 years old, Mollie Jepsen has achieved what many veteran athletes can only dream about. The Canadian alpine skier took gold in the women's super-combined standing at the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games.
Jepsen’s historic victory came in at No. 5 in the Americas Paralympic Committee’s Top 10 Moments of 2018.
Canada-USA final at Paralympic Winter Games named IPC’s top-moment of 2018
The gold medal match between the two Para ice hockey giants Canada and USA kept everyone watching holding their breath until the final siren. The drama, tension and last second victory meant it topped the International Paralympic Committee’s Top 10 Moments of 2018. Canada lost the classic battle 2-1 in overtime.