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Organization teaches disabled to water ski at 'Adaptive Aquafest'

Sunday, June 30, 2013 - 12:57pm

A day of freedom is how many describe it. President of the Houston based non-profit organization, Texas Adaptive Aquatics, Roger Randal says, "It's such a thrill for them to get out of that prison and get out of that wheel chair and feel the freedom of being behind a motor boat."

A time for adults and children with disabilities to ditch the wheelchairs and let loose on the water —that's what Texas Adaptive Aquatics (T.A.A.) specializes in.

Randall says, "We travel around the country and teach people to get out of their wheelchair and get out and have fun."

Saturday the Adaptive Aquafest landed on Lake Palestine in Tyler. Custom equipment, a team of volunteers, community members and sponsors made this day extra special.

Randall says, "Every ski is unique and every skier is unique." Sory Rivera has been considered ‘disabled’ her whole life, but she says the feeling of being on the water makes her feel 'able' to do anything.

Rivera says, "You get to do something that people that can walk can get to do. It's just so liberating, it's relaxing you got the wind in your hair it's just amazing" Rivera was diagnosed with a form of muscular dystrophy when she was three years old, but that hasn't stopped her. Rivera says "Doctors told my parents I wouldn't live past the age of 7, and now here I am 25 living and having a blast!"

Sory was soaring across the waves Saturday, joined by many other 'able' water skiers. Randall says, "It's such a tremendous amount of hard work to get them up and going, but once you see that smile, it's just unbelievable."

For more information about Texas Adaptive Aquatics visit:

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