Challenge: Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia
Sports: Wheelchair Basketball
Bio: Luke is a wheelchair basketball athlete who plays for the Seattle Jr. Sonics NWBA Jr. Division basketball team. As a dedicated leader to his team, he maintains a passion for the sport and his team through workouts, organized practices, and of course off-the-court social activities with his teammates. Luke’s goals for wheelchair basketball stretch as far as winning paralympic gold with Team USA, but he knows it must be taken one step at a time. As he gets ready for his senior year of high school wheelchair basketball, he has his eyes set on playing college basketball at one of the many Universities with wheelchair basketball programs. This would be the next step for his wheelchair basketball goals, as well as the academic and career goals he values. Outside of wheelchair basketball, Luke maintains an interest in experiencing the outdoors through kayaking, hiking, and road trips.
As early as when Luke was learning to walk, Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP) had an impact on his day-to-day life. A degenerative condition, HSP didn’t, and still has not taken Luke’s ability to walk and run. Although he faced challenges with the condition, Luke competed in able bodied sports through middle school. It wasn’t until the local Junior wheelchair basketball team was short one player for their home tournament that he tried wheelchair basketball. He admits he was reluctant to compete in a game he had never tried more than once, but after one nail-biter victory in which he blocked the would be game-tying shot, there was no taking him away from the sport. Four years later the passion has only grown, and he looks to continue to use HSP as a tool to propel him forward to his goals.