Winter Wheelchair Games at the VA Hospital

PLAINS TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Just like the Olympics we watch on TV, the VA Hospital's Wheelchair Games are highly anticipated.

"Oh, just wonderful," Army veteran Jack Oliver said. "Wonderful day here."

The hospital has been hosting the games during the summer for the last six years. This is the first time for a winter Wheelchair Games. Activities included bowling, golfing, and archery. The goal is to get the veterans to be more active.

"It's all kind of stuff that would give them hand-eye, good range-of-motion," Wheelchair Games organizer Denise Redenski said. "It's good activities that have a good functional outcome."

One of the biggest events of the games is the wheelchair race. The veterans are timed as they race down a hallway of the hospital.

Veterans at the event said Oliver is the fastest one of them all.

"Well, I push (my wheelchair) every day," Oliver said. "So I do the best I can. So we go with that."

"Anyone who goes up against him is nuts because he's got his own special chair and that's like putting a Cadillac up against a tank," Navy veteran Cliff Stout said.

Outside of the games, the veterans enjoy music and dancing. Volunteers from the community came to help out with the event.

"They love the social setting," Redenski said. "They love when groups from outside come to see them and to speak to them, their appreciation for service."

At the end of the games, the veterans with the highest scores received medals, but everyone received a certificate for participating.

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