Warrior Games 2022: Ukraine Joins US Troops in Return of Annual Games

2022 Warrior Games

Team US Special Operations Command’s Jerry Millan competes in the shot put at the 2022 Department of Defense Warrior Games on Aug. 24, 2022, in Orlando, Florida. Department of Defense photo by Roger L. Wollenberg.

Roger Wollenberg/Military Health System

After a two-year COVID-19 break, the Warrior Games returned in August with a new nation represented in the competition: a team from Ukraine made up of soldiers wounded in combat there. The Ukrainians faced off against American teams representing each US military branch in the annual Paralympics-style competition in Orlando, Florida.

“It is a great honor to be here to represent Ukraine,” Team Ukraine’s Maksym Yermokhin told WESH News 2. “To be able to share the stories in Ukraine; our personal stories and our journey.”

Celebratory hug

A Team Ukraine athlete hugs Senior Master Sgt. Brian Williams, US Air Force, after the gold medal match in seated volleyball at the 2022 Department of Defense Warrior Games. US Air Force Photo by Airman 1st Class Erin V. Currie.

Airman 1st Class Erin Currie/Air Force Wounded Warrior Progra

Team Ukraine won gold medals in archery, cycling, and powerlifting, including a clean sweep of gold, silver, and bronze in archery’s individual-seated-recurve event.

The Warrior Games are a Pentagon-sponsored event that includes teams from the US Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, and Special Operations Command, as well as from Canada. US Coast Guard members competed under the US Navy team. Teams are made up of wounded, ill, or injured service members and veterans. The teams compete in 12 sports that include individual events for both genders.

The 12 sports include archery, cycling, track and field, golf, indoor rowing, powerlifting, shooting, and swimming, as well as three team sports: sitting volleyball, wheelchair rugby, and wheelchair basketball. The final events took place on Aug. 28.

Among the multisport winners was Air Force Staff Sgt. Matt Cable. The Montana Air National Guardsman, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2014, won gold in the men’s heavyweight powerlifting competition and both a gold and silver medal in indoor rowing events.

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Tom Wyatt is an intern at Coffee or Die Magazine. He is an active duty Naval Special Warfare Boat Operator and a proud father living in San Diego, California. Tom is a budding reporter, looking to pursue journalism and fiction writing upon exiting the Navy.
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