Florida Senate - 2014                            (NP)    SR 1744
       By Senator Hukill
       8-04118C-14                                           20141744__
    1                          Senate Resolution                        
    2         A resolution recognizing the dedicated and inspiring
    3         Florida athletes who competed in the 2014 Winter
    4         Paralympic Games in Sochi, Russia.
    6         WHEREAS, on February 21, 2014, The United States Olympic
    7  Committee announced the United States Paralympic Team that would
    8  compete in the 2014 Winter Paralympic Games, March 7-16, 2014,
    9  in Sochi, Russia, and
   10         WHEREAS, the 80-member team, which included six guides for
   11  visually impaired athletes, comprised 22 women and 58 men, and
   12         WHEREAS, Team USA’s 80 athletes competed throughout the 9
   13  days of Paralympic competition in all five sports: alpine
   14  skiing, which includes snowboarding; the biathlon; cross-country
   15  skiing; sled hockey; and wheelchair curling, and
   16         WHEREAS, even though the Sunshine State is short on snow
   17  and ice, two Floridians, Declan Farmer and Gregory “Greg” Shaw,
   18  were among those selected to represent the United States in the
   19  2014 Winter Paralympic Games on the Paralympic Sled Hockey Team,
   20  and
   21         WHEREAS, the Paralympic motto is “Spirit in Motion,” which
   22  captures the inspirational character of the Paralympic movement
   23  as well as the elite performance of Paralympic athletes, and
   24         WHEREAS, Declan Farmer was born in Tampa, in Hillsborough
   25  County, with proximal femoral focal deficiency, a birth defect
   26  that affected his hips and bones in his lower legs resulting in
   27  bilateral amputation, and
   28         WHEREAS, Declan Farmer has always had a love of competitive
   29  sports, and nothing could slow him down and he began playing
   30  sled hockey in 2006 at a clinic in Clearwater, in Pinellas
   31  County, and
   32         WHEREAS, Declan Farmer attends Berkeley Preparatory School
   33  in Tampa, in Hillsborough County, and
   34         WHEREAS, Declan Farmer has competed on several squads since
   35  his introduction to the sport: the Tampa Bay Lightning Sled
   36  Hockey Team, from 2007 to 2013; the Spacecoast Hurricanes Youth
   37  Sled Team, in 2011; and the Florida Bandits Sled Hockey Team, in
   38  2012, and
   39         WHEREAS, Declan Farmer made his international debut when he
   40  was 15 years old at the 2012 World Sledge Hockey Challenge in
   41  Calgary, Alberta, Canada, where he scored one goal and made four
   42  assists, and
   43         WHEREAS, Declan Farmer made his Paralympic debut in 2014 as
   44  the second-youngest member of the United States Paralympic Sled
   45  Hockey Team and proved invaluable to Team USA, ranking second on
   46  the team in points and goals and tying for first in assists
   47  during the 2012-2013 season, and
   48         WHEREAS, Greg Shaw was born in Merritt Island, in Brevard
   49  County, with sacral agenesis, a congenital condition that causes
   50  spinal deformity, but this condition has not prevented him from
   51  competing at the highest level of athletics as part of the
   52  United States Paralympic Sled Hockey Team, and
   53         WHEREAS, Greg Shaw is a four-time International Paralympic
   54  Committee Ice Sled Hockey World Championship medalist, winning
   55  two gold medals, one silver, and one bronze, and
   56         WHEREAS, Greg Shaw first played for the United States
   57  Paralympic Sled Hockey Team during the 2006-2007 season and was
   58  part of the gold medal-winning squad at the 2010 Vancouver
   59  Paralympic Winter Games, scoring two goals and an assist in five
   60  games, and
   61         WHEREAS, Greg Shaw plans to enroll at the University of
   62  Central Florida to study computer science, and
   63         WHEREAS, Greg Shaw also remains a part of the National
   64  Ability Center family, which he credits for giving him the
   65  support needed to accomplish his goals, and
   66         WHEREAS, the 2014 United States Paralympic Sled Hockey Team
   67  became the first team in Paralympic history to win back-to-back
   68  gold medals, and
   69         WHEREAS, the residents of Florida stand united in respect
   70  and admiration for our Paralympians and for their athletic
   71  accomplishments, sportsmanship, and dedication during the 2014
   72  Winter Paralympic Games in Sochi, Russia, NOW, THEREFORE,
   74  Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of Florida:
   76         That the Senate congratulates the members of the United
   77  States Paralympic Team and expresses special gratitude for the
   78  dedication of Florida’s participating athletes, Declan Farmer
   79  and Greg Shaw, and to everyone who supported their efforts.