New Delhi: Jackson Follmann, who survived the tragic Chapecoense air crash, expressed his desire to compete in the Paralympics as a swimmer. Also Read - Sharad Kumar Anxious About 'Starting From Scratch' After Paralympic Dream Postponed
Follmann, 25, was one of the six survivors of last November’s accident in Colombia, which killed 71 people, including 19 of his teammates and all of the Brazilian football club’s coaching staff, reports Xinhua news agency. Also Read - PyeongChang Paralympics 2018: North Korea to Send Athletes to South Korea
“I need more time but I want to swim,” Follmann told Brazil’s SporTV on Monday. Also Read - PyeongChang to Host Largest Winter Paralympics in March
“It’s a great sport because it has low impact. I can’t run. At the most, I can jog. Swimming could allow me to come back, to have a more healthy life. I’m anxious to compete again.”
Follmann, who had the lower half of his right leg amputated, has 80 percent movement in his left ankle, which is held together by a six-inch titanium rod and four screws.
He said he still attends Chapecoense’s matches and training sessions, which goes someway to satisfying his desire to return to competitive sport.
“I can’t get used to the idea of being a former sportsperson,” he said. “It’s still very early to be talking about the Paralympics. I only had surgery six or seven months ago. I need to respect my body because I suffered 13 fractures.”
(With IANS inputs)