RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)--The 32nd annual Veterans Wheelchair Games begin in Richmond today. We caught up with the athletes as they checked in Sunday at the Greater Richmond Convention Center.
Organizers say more than 3,000 volunteers from the community will be helping with the event this week. The games run June 25 through July 1.
GRTC is taking steps to help the athletes taking part in the games get around the city by using 25 buses to help transport some 600 athletes from the airport, as well as to and from event venues around town through July 1, which is when the event ends.
"This event offers camaraderie, competition and it certainly redefines the mission for them,” Darlene Edwards , McGuire VA Medical Center spokesperson, said. “Their rehabilitation, their recovery is so important but preparing for these games is not just this week, but it’s all year long.”
“This has been in the works for two years now. Our staff and mechanics have been working around the clock to make sure the buses are ready to transport all of these athletes. I think it’s a great, great thing for Richmond and GRTC,” says GRTC CEO Eldridge Coles.
Seventeen seats are being removed from the buses to accommodate the athletes. GRTC said these buses will go back into service right after the games and seats will be replaced as soon as possible.
GRTC says some riders may have to sit in upper level seats until that happens.
For a schedule and other information visit www.wheelchairgames.va.gov.