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Paralyzed veterans use fitness center to stay active

Posted at 10:26 AM, Apr 18, 2018

Great Plains Paralyzed Veterans of America is a non-profit dedicated to improving the quality of life for its members and other individuals living with disabilities. One of the programs that helps with that mission is their fitness center. 

Ten years ago, Travis Hasenkamp was in a construction accident that left him paralyzed from the waist down. Things were tough for him at first, but the fitness center helped him see beyond his disability. 

"Being able to come here give you an opportunity to push yourself further than you ever thought you can achieve," he said. 

The fitness center has modified equipment designed for people in wheelchairs and offers 1-on-1 training with a certified strength and conditioning specialist. 

"We're going to do something that's going to improve your qualify of life," sports director Patrick Reynolds said. "It's going to be challenging and you're going to be in and out." 

It is the only gym of its kind in Nebraska and was made possible by PVA's annual golf tournament. 

Over the past 15 years, the tournament has raised more than $200,000. 

"As much as we've done with the money," volunteer Dan Dolezal said, "there's more we can do.