Tokyo Paralympics opens at an empty stadium


Tokyo-The Paralympics began on Tuesday, during the same pandemic, at the same empty national stadium as the recently completed opening and closing ceremonies of the Tokyo Olympics.

Emperor Imagami, the head of state of Japan, officially started the game this time with the theme of “We Have Wings”. Among the few at hand were Douglas Emhoff, husband of US Vice President Kamala Harris, President Andrew Parsons of the International Paralympic Committee, and President Thomas Bach of the International Olympics.

The acrobatics, clowns, vibrant music and fireworks opening at the top of the stadium marked the beginning of a long parade of athletes.

“I can’t believe we’re finally here,” Parsons said in his opening remarks. “Many people suspected that this day would happen. Many thought it was impossible. But thanks to a lot of effort, the most transformative sporting event on the planet. Is about to begin. “

The opening ceremony featured the flags of 162 delegations, including the refugee team. In addition, the Afghan flag was carried by volunteers, even though the delegation was not in Tokyo.

The Paralympics are held without fans, but the organizers plan to include some school children.

Athletes from Japan
Paralympic Opening Ceremony to be held in Tokyo in August At the opening ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, Miki Matsue, Mineho Ozaki, Taiyo Imai, Elina Yuguchi, Kaori Icho, and Atsumi Asaya will raise the Japanese flag at the Olympic Stadium. .. 24, 2021. (Joe Toth for OIS / via AP)

The Paralympics are about athletic performance. The origin of this word comes from “parallel”, an event held in parallel with the Olympic Games.

Markus Rehm, known as the “blade jumper,” lost his right leg under his knee at the age of 14 in a wakeboarding accident, but should have won the last seven Olympics, including Tokyo, earlier this year. Jumped 8.62 meters, which is the distance of. game. The long jump in Tokyo was 8.41 meters.

Archer Matt Stutzman had no arms and was born with only a stump on his shoulder. He holds the world record for hitting a 310-yard target with the longest and most accurate shot for a shooter, whether disabled or not.

Wheelchair fencing player Bebe Vivo suffered from meningitis as a child, and doctors amputated her forearms and knees to save her life.

“A lot of people have told me that fencing without hands is impossible,” Vivo said in a recent interview. “So it was very important to me to demonstrate and show people, whether you have no hands or legs. If you have a dream and you really want to achieve it, just Please go and take it. “

Both Stutzman and Vivo will fight in Tokyo and have already won medals in previous games. Superstars told their story last year in a Netflix documentary about the Paralympics called “Rising Phoenix.”

The remaining 4,403 Paralympic athletes in Tokyo (a record number of Paralympics) will talk about them until the closing ceremony.

Associated Press