Sept. 20, 2012
BALTIMORE - Loyola University Maryland swimmer Joe Wise, swimming for Team USA at the 2012 Paralympic Games, and head coach Brian Loeffler recently returned to the United States from London and sat down to share their experiences.
Wise, a sophomore from Menlo Park, Calif., competed in five individual events at the Aquatics Centre - the same venue in which the 2012 Olympic Games were held. Also a member of the Team USA squad that competed in the 2008 Paralympics in Beijing, Wise advanced to the finals of the 400-meter freestyle (S10), where he finished fifth in a personal-best time of 4:15.66. Wise also swam the 200m individual medley (SM10), 100m butterfly (S10), 100m freestyle (S10), 100m breaststroke (SB9) and was a member of the 4x100m freestyle relay team.
Loeffler traveled to London as part of the Team USA coaching staff. A mentor for blind athletes, Loeffler coached Lieutenant Brad Snyder, a U.S. Navy veteran that lost his sight in an IED attack in Afghanistan in September of 2011, to two gold medals and one silver at the Game. Snyder won gold in his first-ever Paralympic event, winning the 100m freestyle (S11) in a new Paralympic Record time of 57.43. He also claimed a silver medal in the 50m freestyle (S11), breaking the American Record with a time of 25.93 and on the one-year anniversary of the blast that took his eye sight, Snyder snagged his second gold medal of the Paralympic Games. Snyder touched first in the 400m freestyle (S11) in 4:32.41.
The read more about Snyder's story, click here.