By Jim Wenzel, WTC STRATCOM
Dressed in black sweats on a chilly February morning, retired SFC Marcia Morris-Roberts warmed up with more than 40 other Army athletes on Fort Belvoir’s Pullen Field. As a medically retired AW2 Veteran she is vying for a spot on the Army’s track and field team to compete at the 2012 Warrior Games.
The Warrior Games is an annual all-service athletic competition for wounded, ill, and injured servicemembers. The event will take place at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Morris-Roberts hopes to build off of last year’s silver medal win in the sitting shot put event. “Warrior Games is a great outlet,” she remarked, “It keeps you motivated, and I think it’s been very instrumental in my recovery.”
Her journey to the Warrior Games began in 2010 when she lost her left leg below the knee as a result of frostbite.
It was during her recovery that she learned about the 2011 Warrior Games, and represented the Army last year in both swimming and field events. Her participation led her to seek out other adaptive reconditioning activities such as racquetball and rollerblading. Now she is back once more to challenge herself and other wounded, ill, and injured athletes.
After a round of practice shots, Morris-Roberts slid off the metal bleacher as the next athlete to throw. Her long sweats and smooth movement made her injuries virtually invisible, but that is not the way she likes it.
“I don’t like wearing pants because I have a lot of cool patches on my [prosthetic] leg,” she said. “I’m happy and I’m proud of myself, I couldn’t get any better than I am right now.”
One of her goals is to not only compete for herself, but to provide inspiration and motivation to other wounded, ill, and injured servicemembers. Her infectious smile and can-do attitude will certainly bolster her teammates through the hard work ahead of this year’s competition.
As Morris-Roberts continues her journey back to Colorado Springs seeking Warrior Games gold it is easy to see her enthusiasm for the future and those who have helped her on the way. “We had a great team of people that banded together like brothers and sisters,” she concluded, “I owe it all to them because they never let me quit.”