The National Wheelchair Basketball Association National Championships were held the last weekend of March 2023 in Wichita, Kansas. The Brooks Bullsharks, the wheelchair basketball team of Brooks Pediatric Recreation at Jacksonville’s Brooks Rehabilitation, flew out of JAX on their way to the Junior National Championships.
The team got off with a great assist by the Jacksonville Prospect team despite the flight being delayed. Gregory Coleman, Prospect JAX Station Manager gives credit to the Bullsharks, their parents, American Airlines gate agents and Prospect agents for a successful sendoff.
“Our teams really had to work together and it was simply amazing,” said Coleman. “I want to give shout outs to all involved. Nick, for all the heads up from the ticket counter and to the gates. Ron and Gonzalo for implementing the plan. Betty for ensuring all wheelchairs were tagged properly. The ramp guys for ensuring all competition wheelchairs were secured properly. The Prospect agents for ensuring all personal items were on board and stored in accordance with their desires. Then again for their transfers from personal wheelchairs into the aisle chairs and then again to their seats onto the aircraft. These kids were amazing with their positive attitude and great spirits.”
Coleman credits team work for making the dream work. “Here at JAX our dream is to continue to be the most awesome team in the system. I will be working on Sunday to ensure everything goes smoothly on their return home as well,” said Coleman.
The Bullsharks had a great weekend, making it all the way to the Final 4 championship bracket. Despite a hard fought effort, the Bullsharks came up just one point short in the final game.
Wheelchair basketball is one of the many activities offered through Brooks Pediatric Recreation, a free program that provides a safe and supportive environment for youth with physical and/or developmental disabilities so they can engage in recreational activities with their peers. It offers both sport and recreation programs year round, focusing on social connection, family empowerment and community integration.
Prospect is proud of our decades of extraordinary service to travelers with limitations and disabilities, as we treat every individual with the utmost respect, including the talented youth on the Brooks Bullsharks basketball team.
Prospect Airport Services says, “Team JAX rocks! Congratulations to the Bullsharks for a great weekend and another winning season!”
Game photos courtesy Lenora Rogers.