ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — A standing ovation fills the Governor’s Reception Room at the State House Monday but it was a different type of ceremony for Maryland Paralympian Becca Meyers.
Less than a week after withdrawing from the Tokyo Olympics after being told she couldn’t bring her Mother as a personal care assistant, Meyers accepts a new honor.READ MORE: Maryland Native Paralympian Becca Meyers Withdraws From Toyko Games After She Was Denied 'Reasonable' Accommodations
“It’s not nearly as good as a gold medal but I’m going to present her with a Governor’s Citation recognizing her many contributions to the disability community both here in Maryland, across the country and around the world,” Governor Larry Hogan said Monday.
On the 31st Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Meyers is used to the big stage despite dealing with Usher Syndrome, which affects her hearing and vision.
“I have devoted my entire life to swimming,” Meyers said. “It’s who I am as a person and to make that decision was gutwrenching.”
The six-time medalist swimmer is one of the best athletes in the world.
Her mother Maria feels her daughter’s pain.“She’s 100 percent behind her teammates,” she said. “She’s cheering them on. She was so excited to go to Tokyo but she’s getting left behind. We’ve got to make a change.”
The call for change is after athletes were informed one PCA would help the team of 33 Paralympic swimmers but Meyers is ready for her next challenge.
“I hope to work with others who affect change so that no one ever feels afraid to travel with Team USA.”
In 2016 before competing in Rio, Meyers was battled anxiety and fear over lack of quality care. She still won three gold and a silver medal. Don’t put it past her to succeed after adversity once again.
Hogan also signed an executive order making every July “Disability Culture And Achievement Month” in Maryland.
— Max McGee (@MaxMcGeeTV) July 26, 2021
Watch the full press conference below:
This story was originally published on July 26, 2021.