After having both arms amputated and almost losing his life in a work related accident over twenty years ago Hector Picard has overcome obstacles becoming an inspiration for all who know him.
At the invitation of Lee McCoy, Organizer of the Great Abaco Family Fitness Weekend, Mr. Picard has come to Abaco to participate in the annual event. He said “to be honest I had never heard of the Abaco Islands. I had to google it and immediately said yes. Wow, what a venue!”
The four time Ironman, who will swim and sprint as well as demonstrate how to change a bicycle tire without hands, said he ran his first triathlon in 2009 and that Abaco’s event would be his eighty-ninth.
“I enjoy the challenges that my physical disabilities present. It takes a lot of creativity to not only complete a race but to be competitive as well. I’ve had to modify the way I ride a bike, swim and even run in order to compete. The sport of triathlon has given me a happy and healthy life in addition to being therapeutic.”
The triathlons led to inspiring others on the course and that led to the motivational speaking.
He recalled March 31, 1992 when while working as an electrician to remove some equipment on a substation transformer in Hollywood, Florida USA he climbed up an active transformer that “upon contact with my right arm sent 13,000 volts through my right side and out my right foot then again in through my left arm and out my left hip.”
He said the jolt put him in a month long coma and forced the amputations of his entire right arm and half his left arm. He also had second and third degree burns over forty percent of his body.
“I spent two months in intensive care and then six months in a rehabilitation hospital. My journey through recovery was a long and tough one but having two small children with one born before the accident and my second born two years after never allowed for time to feel sorry for myself,” he said.
He said as he competes he wants others to think that anything is possible. “Before I competed in triathlons, I wasn’t a swimmer, I wasn’t a cyclist and frankly I hated running and now I am a four time Ironman. If I can do this then you can too!”
Mr. Picard said “I’m so excited to be competing in this event and the opportunity to inspire new people. I want to thank Lee McCoy, The Great Abaco Family Fitness Weekend, The Cable Bahamas Cares Foundation and the Treasure Cay Resort for making this possible for me.”