Posted: Sep 20, 2012 11:59 AM by Derek Buerkle - KPAX Sports
Updated: Sep 20, 2012 11:48 AM
MISSOULA- A Grizzly tennis player was driving from Chicago back to Missoula when her car rolled over eight times back on June 30, 2002.
Megan Fisher lost her lower left leg in the accident, and her chance to play tennis for Montana, but 10 years later she was topping the podium at the Paralympic Games, and proving that a good athlete never stops finding chances to compete.
Fisher had earned 6 world championships between triathlons and cycling, but she had never felt the pressure of a Paralympic games. She competed in four events in London and claimed her first medal, a silver, in the track cycling three kilometer pursuit.
"Sure I would have loved to win the gold. As soon as I got off the track I told my coach, that won't happen again," Fisher said.
Fisher earned the medal she set out for just a few days later, winning the 16 kilometer road cycling time trial by nearly 30 seconds.
"I left it all on the course. I mean, I had nothing left. I was practically blacking out when I crossed the finish line. I knew that was my job. My job was to go out there and win," Fisher recalled.
She had plenty of help on her trek from amputee to gold medalist, and she gives a lot of credit to where she lived. The surroundings in Western Montana continued to give her new challenges and adventures.
"I think Missoula is just a big kid playground. I can't think of a more fun place to live. There's so much you can do in one day, let alone work. My friends are all active. I want to be with my friends. They are people that I admire and I aspire to be like," Fisher told us.
She moved to Seattle to concentrate on her training last Fall, but she still considers Missoula home. The new Paralympic star hesitates to call herself a role model, but she does enjoy providing inspiration.
"I am always pleased to kind of surprise people with how able I am. And I think that just goes on to show that if Like a little five foot, 100 pound, one-legged girl can do it. Like, if you want to do it, chances are you probably can do it," Fisher concluded.
Fisher is currently enjoying a well-deserved break from her grueling training, which includes in her words, bacon, Big Dipper ice cream, and a few pints at the Kettlehouse Brewery. But very soon, she'll be back on her back, and hopefully pedaling towards a spot in the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.