BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Frustrated and upset is how Paralympic athlete Joe Delagrave describes how he felt when he heard the news yesterday that the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic games would be postponed until 2021.
"There's feelings of devastation, there's feelings of sadness," said Joe Delagrave.
Delagrave is a member of the Team USA Wheelchair Rugby team that trains right here in Birmingham at the Lakeshore Foundation. He has been a member of Team USA for 12 years and was part of the 2012 team that won silver in the London Paralympic games. Delagrave says the hardest part of the news is stopping his training and refocus, but mentally the raw emotion is starting to sink in.
"It sucks. This isn't fun. You know when you're so focused and so excited and it's finally at the end of the four years and then boom it's gone. So allowing yourself to have these emotions is valid and really important so you can address them and regroup and move on," Delagrave said.
Delagrave said the team was supposed to report for training camp in April at the Lakeshore Foundation, but the camp has been cancelled. “Luckily, I didn’t have plans for 2021, so my focus will be strictly on the games,” added Delagrave.