Wheelchair Sports Federation | Adaptive Sports Organization
Wheelchair Football at Forest Park NY Print E-mail
Written by John Hamre   
On Saturday July 15, 2017 at 1 pm at Victory Field at Forest Park in Queens, NY, Adaptive Athletes got together to play Wheelchair Football in the NYC Parks hosted Wheelchair Footballummer League Program.  Athletes picked sides and played as the Jets v Giants for over 3 hours.  They learned the fundamentals, ran drills and played a game on the hard court field created for Wheelchair Football use by the NYC Parks.
For more information, about future Wheelchair Football Games at Forest Park NY, please contact Rodolfo Guevara at (212) 360-3341


Eulogy for Denton Paul Johnson Print E-mail
Written by Janelle Henry   

Denton Paul Johnson departed this world on Tuesday, June 20, 2017.  He entered eternal rest with the Lord, surrounded by family and smothered in love.  Today we do not mourn the physical loss of this wonderful man, but we gather to celebrate his selfless spirit… kindred soul… and a life well lived. 

He is free of medical complications… and no longer prisoner to his earthly body --  And if death imitates life in any way, we can be sure that he is on to his next adventure.

Denton was a leader, an adventurer, an inspiration… As well as a husband, a son, a brother, a step-father, an uncle, a cousin, a grandpa, a friend, and a child of God. 

And though he was many things to so many people, Denton Paul Johnson still managed to be one of a kind.

Even those who only met him in brief passing knew two universal truths about him:

1)      He had a smile that could light up any room

2)      The stories of his countless adventures were sure to awe everyone in that room.


And the greatest story of them all… HIS STORY.

Denton’s parents, Coralee and the late Eric Johnson, welcomed him into their family on October 2, 1956 in Kingston Jamaica. He attended school there until 1972, when as a teenager, he moved to the Bronx with his family.  He later moved to the Village of Port Chester, New York, where he resided for the remainder of his life. 

In 1975, at age 16, he graduated from Bulova School of Watchmakers in Woodside, Queens, New York and was their youngest graduate ever. He was a member of the Bulova Wheelchair Basketball team from 1973 to 1991, first as a coach and then later as a member of the Track & Field and Wheelchair Basketball teams. He was the holder of many National Records in Track & Field for Discus and Javelin.


In 1973, he joined the Eastern Paralyzed Veterans Wheelchair Basketball team, now known as the Bulova Nets, until he retired in 2013. As a team captain he led the Suffolk Seagulls Team Handball to two National Championships in 2002 and 2003.


Additionally, Denton held many National Records and won numerous awards for Track & Field and Wheelchair Basketball.  He served on the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Organizing Committee and the Athlete Advisory Committee. 

In 1988, Denton became a member of the USA Paralympic Team that competed in Seoul, Korea. There he won Gold with a World Record throw in the Shot Putt event and Silver in Discus and Club Throw.

The winning streak continued when he nabbed Silver and Bronze medals in the 1992 Paralympics Games in Barcelona, Spain.  His medal count grew with a Silver in Discus in the 1996 Paralympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia.  He also went on to compete in the 2000 Sydney, Australia Paralympic Games and became a member of the World Champion Teams of 1990, 1994 and 1998, where he won Silver and Bronze medals in the Discus, Shot Putt, and Javelin.

In 1990, Denton was a guest on "Night of a Hundred Stars " at Radio City Music Hall.  He held his own on the NBC telecast against a sea of celebrities including Muhammad Ali, Bon Jovi, Jerry Rice, and Jackie Joyner-Kersey.

Denton’s travels led him all over the world.  His charisma and his talents brought him to the center of many A-List circles, ranging from famous comics & musicians to movie stars and presidents.  The likes of Brooke Shields, Kid the Rapper, and even Bill, Hilary & Chelsea Clinton. 

From the Redwood Forest to the White House, from New Zealand and back to New York, Denton collected friends from every corner of the world.  Every person he met finally learned what everyone in this room has always known-- Denton Paul Johnson was one of a kind.

Above all accolades and allies, Denton Johnson was family.  Many of you know him from many different facets of life, but to me he was always just "Uncle D."  We shared many things: relatives, DNA… But the most important was our love of travel. I remember when I was little, he would spend hours recounting the places he had visited and the sites he had seen. One hour with uncle Denton was like having V.I.P. access to the Seven Wonders of the world!  Every time I left a visit with Uncle D, my “little bucket list" evolved into an ever-growing Rolodex.


The last time I saw uncle Denton was three weeks ago at Greenwich Hospital. He was still and quiet – the exact opposite of the man I knew growing up.  However, it was clearly the aftermath of a strong man with a strong will, refusing to give in to his illness until he had everything in order.  During the visit, he gestured to the corner of his room where there was a marker and a stack of wrinkled papers. I didn't understand, but I brought the stash to him.  With all the strength he could muster, he wrote three things: Redwood Forest. Golden Gate Bridge. Winding Road in San Fran.

I couldn't stop smiling. Even in his fragile state, he was adamant that he share his recommendations for my future travel "to-do" list.  After I read it, I looked at him and he was beaming from ear to ear – that iconic smile that we've all come to know and love.

That was the last memory that I'll have uncle Denton… And it was perfect.  And in many ways, very symbolic of his life.


That last moment reconfirmed the two universal truths we know about Denton:

1) He had a smile that could light up any room 

2) His countless adventures could awe anyone in that room. 

So now, as we use this time to reflect on what we will most fondly remember about Denton, I challenge you to not just mourn the loss of his physical presence, but celebrate a life well lived… And a spirit that lives on. And if we do that just right, then Denton will live on through us.

Smile more often… Or be the reason that someone smiles big enough to light up a room.

Stop talking about the things you would like to do "one day" and do it now.  

Join the basketball team… Take that trip… And if you ever actually make it to the Redwood Forest, take it all in-- because Denton would have wanted you to.


Uncle D, you are gone, but not forgotten.  - Rest in peace. 

Your radiant smile and gentle kindness will be etched in our hearts forever.

Your Loving Niece - Janelle Henry 

The family has asked in lieu of flowers, please give to the Wheelchair Sports Federation in Denton's name.  Wheelchair Sports Federation will miss his friendship, dedication, huge heart and even bigger laugh. 

Last Updated on Thursday, 13 July 2017 23:52
Wheelchair Tennis Workshop at West Side Tennis Club Print E-mail
Written by John Hamre   


West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills NY hosted a Wheelchair Tennis Workshop to build awareness about the sport of Wheelchair Tennis on Saturday April 29th from 11:30 am to 1 pm.  With the help of Wheelchair Sports Federation, the Nassau Kings, Pro Staff at West Side Tennis Club and local Boy Scouts, Wheelchair Tennis players taught Club Members about the adaptive sport of Wheelchair Tennis.


Para Table Tennis Clinic (NY) Print E-mail
Written by John Hamre   


Adaptive Sports USA hosted a Para Table Tennis Clinic funded by a grant from The Neilsen Foundation and in partnership with Project Table Tennis, New York City Parks and Recreation and Wheelchair Sports Federation on Friday April 28, 2017 from 12 noon to 4 p.m at the Al Oerter Recreation Center, 141-40 Fowler Avenue Flushing NY.


Table Tennis Coaches Tahl Leibovitz, Paralympic Gold Medalist & Jennifer Johnson, Paralympic Gold Medalist. Assistant Coach Sammy Feinstein Co-founder of TheraPyng Partners Project Table Tennis showed off their skills in order to increase participation and awareness of Para Table Tennis in New York City and Long Island. The participants were taught how to Serve and Return Serve, Forehand & Backhand Table Tennis strokes, different spins and table tennis placement. An overview of the rules and eligibility of the sport of Para Table Tennis were also given. All had fun and enjoyed some good competition at the end.  For more information about Para Table Tennis, please feel free to contact Jennifer Johnson at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or Tahl Leibovitz at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Montefiore Adaptive Sports Clinic (NY) Print E-mail
Written by John Hamre   


The Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Montefiore, the New York Parks Department, the Wheelchair Sports Federation, and Walk with a Doc had their Inaugural Adaptive Sports Open House on Saturday April 1, 2017 from 11 am to 2 pm at the Williamsbridge Oval, 3225 Reservoir Oval East, Bronx, New York.  Over 25 wheelchair athletes participated in a hands-on demonstration of Wheelchair Basketball, Wheelchair Tennis , Handcycling, Adaptive Rowing and Wheelchair Football.


Montefiore plans on having more Adaptive Sports opportunities in the Bornx, NY.  To find out more about adaptive sports programs contact: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 718-547-4940

Last Updated on Monday, 01 May 2017 03:08
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