PROV’L CAPITOL, Laoag City, Aug. 12– As added personal fund, Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee R. Marcos handed Php15,000 check to Paralympic runner Roger Tapia, 21, of Pasaleng, Pagudpud during a press briefing held at the Provincial Capitol here last August 10. Tapia is bound for London for the London Paralympic Games which begins on August 29, 2012.
“I am very happy for the province’s support. I am thankful to Gov. Imee for she gives me money whenever I compete in other countries. I’m hoping that she will never get tired of helping me,” said Tapia in the dialect.
Tapia was born with a single arm and a speech defect and according to him he never had any medical consultations on his physical defects.
He begun as athlete at 5th grade. He loved sports ever since. He played volleyball, basketball and all kinds of sports especially in running events. He joined the past IRAA meets during his high school days. At 4th year, he competed in the Palarong Pambansa where coaches saw his athletic prowess.
Tapia clocked 23.56 seconds in the 200m race during the Malaysia Open held last April 2012 which qualified him to compete for the T-46 classification (one-arm amputee) in the 2012 London Paralympics.
His school, the Jose Rizal University and the Philippine Sports Commission are also helping him with his trainings and his travel needs to London. At present, he trains at the Ultra in Pasig City, with coach Joel Deriada from Philippine Team.
The London Paralympic Games 2012 is set to begin on August 29 and Tapia is expected to take off on August 24 together with his nine fellow Filipino Paralympians. (AIZA MARIE U. VILORA/CMO-PGIN)