Paul remembers the exact month and year he joined CLI’s Adult Recreation Services program—June 1979. Over the years he’s definitely become a familiar face at the agency, always there with a smile and quick with a joke. Even though Paul has Cerebral Palsy and requires the use of a walker, he does not let his disability get in the way of being successful in sports.
"The Recreation program makes me get out and get going and stay active," said Paul. "If it weren’t for the program I’d be in a wheelchair. Keeping active keeps me moving."
For the past 25 years, Paul has participated in Adult Recreation Services’ bowling events and Special Olympics bowling and has many awards and medals from competitions.
While Paul has always loved and excelled at bowling, until early 2010 he has never been able to bowl independently. Paul had to have someone walk with him to the bowling lane with his bowling ball and then hand the ball to him when he was ready to bowl. In spring of 2010, Recreation Coordinator Sharon Zull and her husband, Jim, came up with an idea to help Paul bowl independently. They constructed a device that attaches to Paul’s walker so he can take the ball to the bowling lane by himself and pick up the ball when he is ready to bowl, as well as a special "sling" for Paul’s walker to hold balls for Bocce Ball. Paul has a newfound sense of freedom thanks to the inventions, and even took home a Gold medal in a Special Olympics Bocce Ball competition. "I can do it on my own. Even my bowling is so much better now," said Paul.
"Seeing Paul bowl and play Bocce independently is what this job is all about," said Sharon. "Making a difference in his life is as rewarding as it gets."
Next to bowling is Paul’s love of skiing. He’s skied with the Recreation Services program for nine years and won many medals through Special Olympics. Paul is able to ski thanks to a bi-ski, which is similar to a sled. He sits down on the ski and a volunteer tethers behind him to help. Paul then uses outriggers, which are poles with skis on them, to glide down the hill. "Skiing feels like a thrill ride," described Paul. "It’s a freedom that I can’t describe."
When he’s not keeping busy with sports, Paul likes to kick back and relax. He likes to watch sports and movies
(except "chick flicks"), spend time with his family including his twin brother, Pete, and hang out with his