#InvictusGames, #PrinceHarry, #JustinTrudeau, #DavidJohnston, #MelanieTrump
Toronto, Sep 24 (Canadian-Media): Prince Harry, the royal visitor from England, who had co-founded the Invictus Games in 2014 was full of praise for the courage that had brought dozens of war-wounded athletes to the Games as they marched, limped or wheeled their way to martial music, bright lights and cheers into a downtown sports arena, Toronto Ontario yesterday to mark the opening of the Invictus Games 2017 in Toronto, media reports said.
Launch of 2017 Invictus games in Toronto. Image credit: Invictus Games Foundation
Before the games were officially declared open yesterday, Harry took to the stage to explain their meaning.
“In a world where so many have reasons to feel cyncial and apathetic, I wanted to find a way for veterans to be a beacon of light and show us that we all have a role to play – that we all win when we respect our friends, neighbours and communities,” he said.
“That’s why we created Invictus – not only to help veterans recover from their physical and mental wounds, but also to inspire people to follow their example of resilience, optimism and service in their own lives,” said Harry.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau welcomed all of the competitors and their families on behalf of the host country and called them all an inspiration to others as he spoke of their sacrifices and dedication to helping others.
Invictus reportedly means unconquered in Latin and the Games and the mandate behind the Games is not about individual winning, it’s about winning as a team, CBCNews reports said.
The first Invictus Games took place in London, England in 2014 where reportedly more than 400 athletes from 13 countries came together to compete.
Now in its third year, the Invictus Games is in Toronto and reportedly at least 550 competitors from 17 countries are expected to compete in 12 sports of these Games which will run until Sept. 30.
Harry, who served in Afghanistan -- located within South Asia and Central Asia -- with the British army for about two months, said he wanted to use his platform “to help the world understand and be inspired by the spirit of those who wear the uniform.”
“No matter what challenges life has set before them, they continue to do what they do best: serve their countries, with passion and integrity,” Trudeau said to cheers. “You’re not only here to inspire, you’re also here to win.”
Trudeau added, “We know that no one leaves a battlefield unchanged, and that not all scars can be seen. Asking for help when you have physical and mental injuries, that’s hard for everyone. But it’s especially tough for people like you who have dedicated your lives to helping others.”
American first lady Melania Trump was among dignitaries who watched the flag raising ceremony.
In addition to Canadian and foreign dignitaries, other celebrities present at the opening ceremony were comedian Mike Myers, and singers Alessia Cara and Laura Wright.
The games were officially opened by David Johnston, in one of his final acts as Governor General of Canada and he tweeted, 'I officially declared the #InvictusGames open during the opening ceremony. Good luck to all the competitors! #IG2017."
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
Invictus Games Toronto 2017
#InvictusGamesToronto2017, #AccessibilityInnovationShowcase, #IG2017, EleanorMcMahon, #TorontoPanAmerican/ParapanAmericanGame, #ontario150, #KathleenWynne, #PrinceHarry
Toronto, Sep 21 (Canadian-Media): Ontario is pleased to host on September 23, the third and largest Invictus Games -- an international adaptive sporting event for active and veteran service men and women who are wounded, injured and sick - today.
Eleanor McMahon, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport, was at Union Station today to meet and greet Team Canada as they arrived for the Games today.
Eleanor McMahon welcomes Invictus Games Toronto 2017
“It was my privilege to meet the competitors and coaches representing Team Canada at the 2017 Invictus Games and welcome them to our province. The dedication and perseverance of this team is an inspiration to all of us. Hosting the Games is an honour for Ontario and will pay tribute to the sacrifices of Canada’s military personnel and their unconquerable spirits. Good luck to all the competitors and go Team Canada!,” Eleanor McMahon, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport was quoted by the media as saying.
The province is reportedly set to host more than 550 competitors from 17 countries, with events taking place from September 23 to September 30.
Competitors will reportedly participate in 12 different sports across Toronto at some of the state-of-the-art venues built for the 2015 Toronto Pan American/Parapan American Games.
“We are thrilled that the Invictus Games are about to begin here in Ontario. This is a wonderful opportunity for us all to unite around the power of sport. I wish my very best to the competitors, as they prepare to test their limits and reimagine what’s possible. Go Team Canada!,” Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario was quoted by media as saying.
Kathleen Wynne: Facebook
Admission for some competitions is free including Jaguar Land Rover Driving Challenge on September 23 at the Distillery District; Wheelchair Tennis including from September 23 to 25 at Nathan Phillips Square; Golf on September 26 at St. George's Golf and Country Club; Cycling on September 26 and 27 at High Park; Archery from September 27 to 29 at Fort York National Historic Site.
Service men and women of these Games represent inspiration and to overcome limitations and offer a unique power of sport and an opportunity to promote recovery and rediscover a sense of wellbeing and ongoing.
The Accessibility Innovation Showcase, an official Invictus Games Toronto 2017 event, runs from September 25-26 and features 48 interactive exhibits of made-in-Ontario assistive devices and technologies.
Brigadier-General Mark Misener, Commander Joint Personnel Support Unit and Chef de Mission for Team Canada was quoted by the media as saying, “As Team Canada’s Head of Mission, I am extremely proud of our current serving members and veterans who will be representing the ill and injured, and all of Canada, at the 2017 Invictus Games. They are the personification of commitment and perseverance, and a testament to the transformative power of sport and the success of programs such as Soldier On.”
Prince Harry from Kensington Palace, London The royal founder of the Invictus Games will be in Toronto on 22nd October to set the stage for the Games.
Team Canada will be represented by 90 competitors, with more than 35 from Ontario.
Ontario150 Program, which supports high impact events across the province will reportedly support these Games and includes $10 million to deliver the Games.
According to official reports these Games would attract more than approximately 60,000 visitors -- who are expected to spend approximately $6 million and the Games are expected to generate $42.2 million for the local economy.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)