Avon: 10-year-old dreams of Paralympics swimming

7:04 PM, Feb 9, 2012   |    comments
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  • AVON -- Competitive swimming takes strength and determination.

    Breanna Sprenger is proving you don't need arms and legs to be a competitor.

    "I feel free in the water. I can do things in the water. I can do flips," Breanna says.

    Breanna's parents, Carrie and John Sprenger, are incredibly proud of what their oldest daughter has overcome.

    "Before she was born, we didn't think she was going to live," Carrie said.

    Born with missing limbs and several internal organ complications, Breanna has had over 16 surgeries.

    After her last procedure two years ago, the Sprengers were able to let Breanna concentrate on activities.

    She's a cheerleader and ballet dancer, but her favorite place to be is in the water. 

    Last May, the French Creek Marlins invited her to join the team.

    She practices three times a week at the French Creek YMCA and competes in swim meets.

    Her preferred events are freestyle and backstroke, 50 and 100 meters.

    "On land she's limited [to a wheelchair]. She loves to get in the pool and go, and try her best," Carrie says.

    Breanna's next goal is the Jimi Flowers swim meet at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

    The competition is a U.S. Paralympic event.

    "I'm going to the Colorado swim meet so I can swim against other swimmers like me," Breanna says.

    Breanna hopes to one day compete in the Paralympic Games.

    "I can probably do it!" she says.

    Wednesday night, her supporters came out in droves to Coleone's Pizza in Avon.

    Hundreds gave donations to "Team Breanna" to help her family travel to Colorado.

    The meet is Feb. 25. Breanna says it won't be her last.

    To help support "Team Breanna" click on the Facebook link to the left.  100 % of donations go to her travel and swimming expenses.

    WKYC-TV

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