Athlete of the Week: Josie DeHart

Published: Nov. 1, 2023 at 11:53 PM MDT
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) - Fruita Native Josie Dehart is bringing a gold medal back to the Grand Valley.

“It was difficult, like my mom had a set alarm for like 3am to try to wake up and watch my games and but they still were able to like, get on and cheer me on, which was super cool. But yeah, that was pretty difficult,” Dehart said.

That was one of the many challenge Dehart faced in recent months, travelling over to Bangkok, Thailand with the Team USA Paralympic Wheelchair Basketball Team. Dehart and the rest of the team took home gold in the U25 group.

“That’s probably my crowning achievement. Last summer, we were in Brazil, and that was for world qualifiers, and we got silver there. So then that kind of was like, okay, like we can get gold,” Dehart said.

Dehart has had a long journey, getting her athletic career to where it is now. A journey that has taken her across the country and across the globe.

“Since I grew up in Fruita, there was not a lot of other kids in wheelchairs, like when I was in high school. So I didn’t really know about adaptive sports at all. I actually I went to an all sports adaptive camp in California,” Dehart said, “I went to the University of Wisconsin Whitewater, and I played on a girls team there. And then USA team, those are the only two girls teams I’ve been on. Well, the first time I tried out for USA team was in 2017. And like just seeing everybody like seeing how good they were. I think that’s what really motivated me.”

But now the Dehart is back stateside, with a new medal for her trophy case, but according to her, she is now focused on adding even more athletic accolades to her collection.

“I actually leave for my send off camp in a week we’re going to Chile where it’ll qualify us for the Paralympics coming in August. So that’s my next big thing happening,” Dehart said.