SAN DIEGO — Paralyzed from the underarms down since she was 15, La Jolla local Amelia Opean has often considered swimming to be the perfect sport for her. In the water, she’s light. Her upper body no longer has to work with crutches to support her weight — and she’s free.
However, this year she has found her second love on the water, in the form of sailing. With help from San Diego’s Challenged America, Opean can jibe and tack from a seated position.
“I had been a passenger on boats before, but with Challenged America, they teach you to sail,” Opean said. “You have to pick it up and do everything for yourself.”