Paralympic athlete never says never on the road to London

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by SHELLY SLATER

Bio | Email | Follow: @wfaashelly

WFAA

Posted on June 22, 2012 at 8:16 PM

It's three years of sweat and determination in a chair designed for Paralympics sports.

“I could very easily not be here today, and I kind of take that as I got a second chance at life,” Amy Simmons said.

A car wreck at age 17 paralyzed Simmons. That tragedy was a wake-up call she's actually thankful for.

“Be thankful you're alive," she said. "And there is no reason you can't get out there and do what you want to do. Your biggest obstacle is you."

With that mindset, she's competing for the U.S. Paralympics team going to London. Her goal to be one of 59 making the grade competing in javelin and shot put.

“Sometimes people with physical disabilities are almost better athletes," she said. "You have to work that much harder to reach the same or even harder goal.”

She throws, she trains, she tries, over and over again. Every week, to prove her disability doesn't define who she is.

And it doesn't. Her positive attitude leaves the strongest mark.

“Crazily enough, I think I've been given more opportunities in a wheelchair than before,” Simmons said.

Saying yes, instead of believing no, is the way Simmons treats her life. And this is no different.

“There were so many times when it was easier to not try,” she said.

But her life isn't full of excuses, it's full of opportunity, and the truest understanding that today is precious.

"You're never guaranteed tomorrow, so you gotta do it today!” she said.

E-mail sslater@wfaa.com

The equipment Amy uses is very expensive. If you would like to help in her efforts to reach her dreams, click this link.

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