Mallory Weggemann has been a competitive swimmer since the age of seven. In 2008, an epidural injection left her with paraplegia at T10—from the abdomen down.
A year and a half later, she was back in the pool again—this time competing as a Paralympian. She broke her first set of world records at the 2009 Can Am Speedo Para Swim Meet. Over the next four years she broke 34 American Records, 15 World Records, becoming a twelve time World Champion and became a two-time Paralympic Medalist at the London 2012 Games – one gold, the other bronze.
She got married in 2017, became a motivational speaker, disability rights advocate and writer. (See this post for more about her wedding from 2017)
Her husband is also her coach.
A fall from a hotel shower chair in 2014 permanently damaged a nerve in her arm, putting even more strain on her swim training and on her wheelchair use than ever before. She considered retiring, but after extensive surgery, she decided to try again. So as the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic games approach, Mallory is planning her comeback.
“Who knows if I will reach this next high in the sky goal,” Weggemann says, “But I have learned that you never know unless you put yourself out there, unless you are willing to start at the bottom just for a chance to see how far you can climb.”