An unique diploma in the whole world

On the 8th September 2012, Javier Hernández Aguirán, who had been a sports journalist since 2001 and with not even 3 years of training under his belt, achieved the feat of competing in a Paralympic Games final: 50 metres backstroke. He finished last in a final in which no-one – let alone him – had ever dreamt he would reach. And trying to overcome his own limits, the only aspiration that was left and that should always be in place, he finished at just less than a second from sixth place. Nothing would have changed or made him more unique.

His diploma shows there hasn’t been a modern case like his in the whole world. Click To Tweet

His diploma shows he is unique as so far in modern Paralympic sports – now so professional with participants from all the major world powers – there hasn’t been a case like his of someone who without ever having trained before, starts at the age of 30 to do so and in only 3 years reaches a final in such a core sport as swimming in world Games be it Olympic or Paralympic. And it was unique for where it happened. In London: a society which is at the vanguard of social harmony within a rich social diversity and whose lessons in this field should serve us all as an example.

Here’s an extract written by Javier in his biography “From My Feet to Your Mind”:

All Games are a quest for eternity, to be remembered forever for one or more reasons. It is said that London didn’t make an impact with its landscape as Peking did, but the sensation and feelings that impregnated us is magical: a place where equality amongst people with and without disabilities isn’t just preached about but is lived. It is moving to see how everyone genuinely believes in it. It is not even talked about because it is so everyday, it is just like breathing – not talked about but just done every day and every hour. At every hour every day. It might be the Paralympic Games, but there are no “Paralympic athletes” in a category of their own as such. There are just sports men and women. And the crowd follow them and cheer them on as though they were participating in the Olympic Games. Lord Sebastian Coe, the man behind these Games, gave this commitment a slogan: ‘Inspire a generation’. If only Spain could copy this British model: a positive example of wellbeing, where there is no shame at looking and no embarrassment at being looked at. We are what we are, no matter how we are. I want to live in a country like this, and above all, I want my country to be like theirs”.

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