Becca Meyers, a deaf and blind Paralympic swimmer who withdrew from the Tokyo Games after she mentioned she was denied a request to convey her mom to function her private care assistant, mentioned the choice has “torn her apart.”
Due to Covid-19 restrictions, the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee refused her request for her mom to function her private care assistant in Tokyo, Meyers mentioned.
“I’ve always been known as Becca the swimmer and not Becca the deaf-blind person. And now I feel very worthless as a person. For someone who trained five years for this moment, especially an extra year with the pandemic, it makes it all seem like it was for nothing,” she mentioned on NCS’s “New Day.”
Meyers mentioned that on the 2016 Games in Rio, she “fell apart” with out her mother or a private care assistant there.
The USOPC is offering a single personal care assistant for 33 American Paralympic swimmers, together with 9 who’re visually impaired, in accordance with Meyers.
“The bottom line is no one on that team is trained or certified to deal with blind or visually impaired swimmers, especially in my case as a deaf-blind athlete,” she mentioned.
Her mom, Maria Meyers, mentioned that Becca wants a one-on-one assistant to assist her navigate the airport, eating halls and different venues.
“I’m there to just whisper in her ear, you know, ‘it’s on your left, it’s on your right, just to guide her and take care of her.’ I don’t have anything to do with the pool. That’s all her and the coaches. But they really have to have staff that knows how to orient and take care of these kids,” Maria Meyers mentioned.
“This is her life. And they took that away from her. They took her moment to shine,” she added.