JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas –
With a New Year comes many the potential for many challenges and changes. While the world still deals with restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Air Force Wounded Warrior, or AFW2, Program strives to continue providing wounded warriors an avenue to showcase their use of adaptive sports as part of their recovery journey.
To do this best, AFW2 personnel are bringing the 2022 Air Force Trials to Joint Base San Antonio March 19-27.
Air Force Trials is a competitive event used to select Team Air Force to go on to compete at the annual Department of Defense Warrior Games. Normally, the Air Force Trials are held at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, with the last in-person competition held there in 2019. However, this year there are big changes to location, with venues looking different, but the training, competitions and successes will all be the same.
“Due to the current COVID-19 restrictions at Nellis, and in order to keep Air Force Trials in-person versus virtual, the decision was made to move the event to San Antonio,” said Marsha Strawderman, Warrior Care Support branch chief.
Although COVID-19 is still a concern for many warriors, caregivers and staff members, there are necessary precautions being put in place to ensure the event is safe for all who attend.
Not only are all attendees required to be fully vaccinated and have a negative COVID-19 test prior to coming, but there will also be extensive sanitation of all equipment, limited passengers in vehicles, limited people inside the venues and other processes to ensure the safety of everyone’s health.
AFW2 understands that traveling right now can be stressful, scary and uneasy but all precautions are being taken care of, and the excitement of having Air Force Trials in person for the first time since 2019 is overwhelming.
“We’re implementing strict COVID-19 protocols to make this the safest event possible, while still fulfilling the desire of every warrior-athlete to compete in person. Although Air Force Trials has never been hosted anywhere other than Nellis, we are extremely excited to host it in San Antonio this year,” Strawderman said.
AFW2 staff, coaches and medical teams are working hard behind the scenes to ensure this event is successful for everyone. They remain available, and adaptable, to make any last-minute changes necessary that can come about with the constantly changing COVID-19 environment.
“The fact that we were able to come up with a plan to bring our athletes together is truly a testament to the hard work and dedication of the staff and coaches at AFW2 to make this a memorable experience for each athlete involved,” Strawderman said. “It will showcase the power of adaptive sports as part of these Wounded Warriors’ recovery and will bring to life our motto of Care Beyond Duty.”
For more updates on 2022 Air Force Trials, to refer an Airman or Guardian, and to access resources and tools from other programs offered within AFW2, visit the website at www.woundedwarrior.af.mil.