Hello my name is Raymond Martin, I have been feeling left out and out of place when I hear my friends talk about riding their bikes around the neighborhood. I finally tried a handcycle out and I enjoyed it. I thought it would be hard to drive but it was not. Now I really want a handcycle so I can ride around the neighborhood with my friends. My coach says it is a good way to train also. There are handcycle races as well maybe I could participate in those in the future. Most of my teammates are faster than me on the racer, maybe this cycle can help me build muscle and get faster. If I can train and have fun at the same time, Why not? I hope I can be able to get the grant from Athletes helping Athletes and get the cycle. Thank you in advance.
Raymond started wheelchair sports at age 6. Miss Putt the head coach in a Harry Moore invited him to participate. Raymond enjoyed his first competition specially earning the novice award since then and several other trophies and awards he kept practicing. He participated in his first national l Championships in Rutgers, NJ in 2001, where he won his first place record in various events in track and field. Since then he has been practicing non-stop and has participated in not just track and field but has added events like table tennis, swimming and lat year he started archery where he broke the record for his division. Raymond was invited to represent Team USA in the IWAS games held in Rutgers University in NJ. Raymond participated in the 1500m track event the 50m and 100m backstroke and freestyle. Even after Raymond was up graded 2 classes up he stepped up to the plate and earned 1 gold and a silver medal in his swim events.
After all this hard work, when Raymond came back from competition this huge box that took up the living room floor was waiting for him. Time for FUN! The handcycle was eagerly put together and plans were made. Raymond had his first bike trip with his brother Richard and 2 best friends around Liberty State Park. On lookers who have never seen this handcylce were in awe to see what people with disabilities can do. All we (his parents) saw was this huge smile on Raymond?s face, sweat coming down his forehead, and laughing with his friends. Thank you so much AHA!
Raymond actually said; "So, this is what it feels like to ride a bike with friends."
Thank you for your gift,
April & Danny Martin