In July 2008 10 year old Jack Wallace was involved in a boating accident while on vacation with his family on Lake George, NY. His injuries resulted in his right leg being amputated above the knee.
The following summer, Jack went to Camp No Limits with his family for the first time. He was inspired by the other children to work hard and realized that his limb loss was not a limitation. Camp No Limits helped Jack to stop focusing on his limitations and instead focus on all the possibilities that were available to him.
“By spending time with all of the other campers who had overcome their disabilities, I stopped noticing their disabilities and mine as well,”
He attended his first Para ice hockey development camp after hearing about it while at Camp No Limits and soon joined a local team in New Jersey, NJ Freeze. He was encouraged by a fellow teammate Josh Pauls, who went on to win a Paralympic gold medal at Vancouver 2010, the youngest member on that team, and then helped the USA to Paralympic gold at Sochi 2014. Jack was very impressed that there was a possibility that he could make Team USA Sled Hockey Team and go to the Paralympics.
Sports came naturally to Jack. By 15, he was a competitive skier, sled-hockey player, and lacrosse goalie. In June of 2013, Jack joined Team Sunshine, organized by Sunshine Prosthetics & Orthotics owner Brooke Artesi, to compete in the Lincoln Park Triathlon. Money raised was donated to Camp No Limits.
Just turning 19, Jack is now the youngest member of the Team USA Para Sled Hockey Team, finishing with a silver medal at the 2017 Para Sled Hockey World Championship in Gangneung, South Korea. He was named the U.S. Player of the Game.
The United States Paralympic Sled Hockey Team represents the United States at the Paralympic Winter Games. The event is held every four years directly following the Winter Olympic Games in the same city that hosts the Winter Olympics. Jack’s Paralympic goal is nearing.
What is Sled Hockey?
Sled hockey (sledge hockey in Canada and Europe) is a sit-down version of ice hockey for players whose disability prevents them from playing stand-up hockey.
There is little difference in sled hockey and stand-up hockey. The goal is still to put the puck in the net. Sled hockey players use their arms to power themselves around the ice and their hips to move side-to-side. There are six players for each team – three forwards, two defensemen, and a goalie. Substitutes may be made when play is stopped, or on the fly. Previously, periods were 15 minutes in length, but now are increased to 20 minutes, the same as stand-up hockey. Play is on a regulation sized ice rink with standard size nets and puck. Checking and high-speed slapshots are common features of the sport. Players and spectators alike experience the same thrills as stand-up hockey. Two able-bodied referees call the game. (http://teamusa.usahockey.com)
See Jack score the final goal in the USA vs South Korea Para Ice Hockey Championships highlights.
This young athlete with a love of Buffalo Chicken Pizza and Braveheart, whose dream job is being a Pilot, currently a student at The College of New Jersey, class of 2020, is our Inspiration. We’re proud of you and all your accomplishments Jack!
Jack Wallace – Athlete, Student, Inspiration
To follow Jack on twitter: @jwall881