Miami Valley Paralympic gold medalist headed to Tokyo for second Paralympic Games

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CEDARVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – Miami valley native and Paralymic gold medalist Grace Norman is heading to Tokyo to compete for Team USA once again.

Grace Norman took gold in the debut of the triathalon event in the 2016 Rio Paralymic Games. She also took bronze in the 400-meter track and field event.

Five years later, she said she’s preparing to do it again at the 2020 Tokyo Paralymic Games.

“We have pulled away a lot of my weaknesses and have made them become my strengths and I feel a lot stronger going into this Games and more prepared than I ever have been,” Norman said.

The 23-year-old paralympian is training under Coach Greg Mueller in South Bend, Indiana to get ready for the Paralympics.

“Her degree of fitness is at a very high level for someone who has both feet. So if she competed in a local triathalon, she might, very likely, or very probably, would win that event,” Mueller said.

Norman was born with congenital constriction band syndrome, which resulted in the amputation of her left leg below the knee and right big toe.

Norman grew up in Jamestown, Ohio in Greene County. She went to Xenia Christian High School and she graduated from Cedarville University in 2020 with a nursing degree.

“My experience in college athletics gave me an edge as far as just more competitive experiences, learning how to race better, learning myself better,” Norman said.

Norman said the extra year the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Paralymic Games has given her more time to hone her cycling, swimming and running skills.

Now she’s aiming for nothing less than gold.

“I will not settle for anything less in that competition, but when it comes to that date, I can control what I can control, and I will be happy with what I place if I give my best,” Norman said.”

Norman said she hopes to use her nursing degree from Cedarville after the Tokyo Paralympic Games, but has no plans to retire as an athlete yet.

The paralympic games begin on August 24.

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