May 30th, 2013

Wounded Warriors Compete with USAMU

SFC Josh Olson USAMU wounded warriorStory by Amy Rosewater for TeamUSA.org
As soon as SFC Josh Olson fired his first shot at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, he made history: he became the first active-duty U.S. soldier to compete in the Paralympic Games.

Olson lost his right leg after being attacked while on patrol in Iraq in 2003 but has been able to remain on active duty at Fort Benning, Georgia and is a part of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit (USAMU). He trains alongside of many Olympic soldiers there and now has several other Wounded Warriors along with him as well. The Army announced late last year the expansion of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit to include 24 Wounded Warriors as members of its Paralympic and instructor sections. According to SFC Armando Ayala, there are now nine Wounded Warrior shooters (including SFC Olson) as part of the program and two coaches. SFC Ayala, who has been at Fort Benning for eighteen years and served in Afghanistan, has been training the Wounded Warriors.

SFC Josh Olson USAMU wounded warrior

“Without a doubt [Josh has] inspired folks,” Ayala said. “He might have lost a limb but he’s achieved a world-class level of competition and that says a lot to the Army soldier. It’s amazing how these guys can overcome those obstacles. I’m really excited about this team.”

The Army spread word of the program through advertisements and social media and was able to recruit several soldiers to the program. All nine of the shooters currently in the program happen to be leg amputees, although soldiers can participate in the program with other injuries. Currently, all of the soldiers in the program are men although some women have come to Fort Benning to try it.

SFC Josh Olson USAMU wounded warrior

CLICK HERE to Read Full Story

Permalink Competition, News No Comments »
July 23rd, 2012

Learn About Team USA Olympic and Paralympic Shooters

USA Shooting Olympic Preview eZineThe 2012 London Olympic Games commence this Friday, July 27th. Among the thousands of Olympic athletes competing in London will be talented American rifle, pistol, and shotgun competitors. America fields a very strong team, and Team USA hopes to earn medals in many shooting events. To help fans back home follow our team members, USA Shooting has created an excellent 66-page guidebook that profiles America’s 2012 Olympic Shooting Team. This provides background info on all our 2012 U.S. Olympic/Paralympic shooting Team members. To view the USA Shooting Olympic Preview eZine, click the cover photo at right or the link below. Or, if you become a supporting member of USA Shooting, you can get a hard copy edition. USA Shooting, a 501c3 non-profit corporation, was chartered by the U.S. Olympic Committee as the National Governing Body for the sport of shooting in the United States.

CLICK HERE to Read Olympic Preview eZine

Wounded Warrior Will Compete for Team USA at London Paralympic Games
The video below is an inspirational story about 2012 Paralympic Team USA member SFC Josh Olson. Now serving with the USAMU, wounded Iraq war veteran Josh Olson recently qualified to represent Team USA in shooting at the 2012 London Paralympic Games. In this video, Josh talks about his service in the military and the night in Iraq when he lost his leg during an ambush. Josh, who took up shooting as a sport during rehab at Walter Reed, hopes he can inspire other wounded veterans through his performance in London. Editor’s NOTE: This really is an outstanding video. I strongly recommend you take the time to watch it.

Permalink Competition, News No Comments »