Kaweah Delta set to welcome paralympic gold medalist to Oct. 5 fitness expo

Visalia, Calif. - The first U.S. archer to win a Paralympic Games gold medal since 1984, will headline the Kaweah DeltaCommunity Health & Fitness Expo and 5th Annual Rehab Reunion on Saturday, Oct. 5, in Visalia.   

Jeff Fabry, who took the gold last year in London and become the first gold medalist for USA Archery in the Olympic or Paralympic Games since 1996, will show expo attendees the rewards of perseverance as he performs archery demonstrations and signs autographs at the event. He was chosen to headline the expo because the event is in part meant to celebrate and inspire patients of Kaweah Delta Rehabilitation Hospital who have recovered or are on the road to recovery following traumatic injuries. 

“You can’t let anything get in your way. You have to go, go, go,” said Fabry, who at age 15 lost his right arm and leg in a dirt bike accident. “When something traumatic like that happens you want to do things but you can’t do everything. You are going to have setbacks, but you have to get over those obstacles.”  

Following the loss of his limbs, Fabry began shooting arrows with the use of his teeth and a mouthpiece. He was soon a regular competing at a national level against able-bodied individuals until one day, it was suggested to him to try out for the USA Archery Paralympic Team. For Fabry, the rest was history, including his 2012 performance in London that made the history books. None of it would have happened if Fabry would have let his disability get the better of him, he said.      

“You can’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something,” Fabry said. “Cause if you want it bad enough you will find a way to get it done.”  

Expo festivities are set to begin at 8 a.m. on Oct. 5 with a 5K Harvest Run and 1K Minds ‘N Motion Brain Injury Awareness Walk and will continue through 12 p.m. with festivities including archery demonstrations, a pancake breakfast, community booths, free screenings, a teddy bear clinic and more at the Kaweah Delta Rehabilitation Hospital, 840 W. Akers St. in Visalia. For a schedule of events, visit www.kaweahdelta.org/events or call 559-624-5985.  

Established in 1963, Kaweah Delta Health Care District celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2013. Kaweah Delta is a 581-bed district and is the only level III trauma center serving Tulare and Kings counties. The district offers a comprehensive scope of services including everything from a well-respected pediatric hospitalist program to nationally-recognized orthopedic and cancer programs. For more information, visit www.kaweahdelta.org or follow Kaweah Delta on Twitter and Facebook.