Canadian Paralympic athlete talks about rising above tragedy
October 15, 2014

Kevin Rempel October 2014_7

Canadian Paralympic athlete Kevin Rempel talks to staff and students about sledge hockey and overcoming adversity. The event was sponsored by the Henry Bernick Entrepreneurship Centre.

Motivational speaker and Canadian Paralympic sledge hockey player Kevin Rempel visited the Barrie Campus on Oct. 14 to talk with students and staff about his personal and professional life and dealing with adversity.

Kevin became a paraplegic at the age of 23 after a dirt bike accident in 2006. Just four years earlier, his father fell out of a tree and crushed his spinal cord, also becoming a paraplegic. His father would never walk again and doctors told the younger Rempel he never would either.

Kevin’s physiotherapist began offering him some gentle encouragement and asked him “to just try.” After enduring months of intense therapy, Kevin was able to move his toes and he learned how to stand and, eventually, walk again. He later found excitement in life through sledge hockey.

“Sledge hockey is such a big part of my life now, but it’s not where I started,” he says. “It was a journey to get where I am today.”

Kevin joined the Canadian Sledge Hockey Team in 2008 and later won a bronze medal for Canada at the Sochi Olympics.

Learn more about Kevin, his journey and the sport of sledge hockey on his website.