Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Fleet Landing Residents Win Bronze in Senior Games

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Fleet Landing Residents Win Bronze in Senior Games

Article excerpt

Byline: Cindy Holifield

Bill Burg and Don Husmann, both of Fleet Landing, competed in The Senior Olympics in racquetball doubles and brought home the bronze.

The men were among the 12,000 competitors in the 2017 National Senior Games, also known as The Senior Olympics. The games took place in Birmingham, Ala.

Burg and wife JeAnne discovered over dinner one night with Don and Ann Husmann that they had a mutual love for racquetball. In addition, the men had both played in the National Senior Games in Louisville, Ky., in 2007. That night they decided they would play doubles in the 85-89 age bracket and started practicing one or two times a week at Mayport Naval Station.

Now they are recruiting other senior athletes to take part in the qualifying round of the Senior Games in Jacksonville Oct. 2-7. Qualifying athletes will then move on to compete in the Florida Senior Games Dec. 2-10 in Clearwater.

The National Games is by invitation only, based on performances in similar games in each of the 50 states. Only the best in state games (medalists) receive invitations. Husmann won Gold in both singles and doubles in the 2015 games.

Seniors for these games are 50 or older. Most state games are open to nonresidents for qualification for the national games.

Burg and Husmann are considering playing again in Albuquerque, N.M., in the 2019 Senior Games.

Here's more good news:

- Retired Marine Cpl. Christopher Natto has received a customized, all-terrain wheelchair (TrackChair) from Freedom Alliance, an organization supporting the nation's injured service members. Natto suffered injuries from a free-fall parachute accident while in training at Fort Bragg, N.C, in 2016. He lives in St. Augustine with wife Sydney and son Rhett.

Freedom Alliance has provided similar all-terrain chairs to almost 20 injured service members nationwide. Their independence and freedom of mobility are keys to a successful rehabilitation.

- Freedom Boat Club hosted a party to support Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Florida with an "All on Deck" boat ride, consisting of 30 "Bigs" and "Littles." Activities included getting out at the Riverwalk in Riverside to spell Freedom with their bodies, enjoying the view along the San Marco side of the river, then finally a picnic lunch back at Julington Creek Marina. …

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