EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. --
The week-long Air Force Southeast Warrior CARE event and Warrior Games team training began here April 24.
During the CARE event, more than 120 seriously wounded, ill and injured military members and veterans, and 26 caregivers will receive training on, among other areas: caregiver support, recovering Airman mentorship and employment, career readiness guidance, and team building.
More than 40 Air Force Warrior Games team members from around the country will train in various adaptive rehabilitative sports, including wheelchair basketball, sitting volleyball, swimming, and track-and-field, to name a few, during the camp. This is the last training camp for the Air Force before the Warrior Games competition June 30 - July 8 in Chicago, Ill.
“This is the third straight year Eglin has had the privilege of hosting this event,” Brig. Gen. Christopher Azzano, 96th Test Wing commander, said to the attendees at the opening ceremony. “The last two years were tremendously successful. We’re honored and humbled to be part of your transformation and inspired to witness you cope with your unique challenges.”
Marsha Gonzales, Warrior CARE support branch chief, said the CARE event will assist the new warriors strive for personal improvements, while the training camp will test them physically.
“We’ve added some additional things to the program since last year,” Gonzales said. “The training camp coaches will push the Warrior Games team participants to the maximum extent possible. Then, they’ll have their recovery time. By the time they hit Warrior Games in June, they will be at their optimum physical potential.”
In 2011, the Department of Defense created the Military Adaptive Sports Program to enhance warrior recovery by engaging wounded, ill and injured service members in ongoing, daily adaptive activities, based on their interest and ability.
Since its inception, this program has assisted more than 158,000 wounded, ill and injured service members at 325 structured camps and clinics, for activities, according to a DOD news release.