MESA, Ariz. — The great thing about soccer is regardless of a person’s ability, just about anyone can play the sport.
12 News Senior Digital Video Producer, Gabe Trujillo, and the Arizona Heat Power Soccer Club are proving that.
“When I became a wheelchair user, I just thought I wasn’t going to be an athlete anymore, that part of my life was gone,” Trujillo said. “But, when I came across power soccer, it just completely changed my life around.”
It not only changed Gabe’s life, but it also changed his dad, David’s, as well.
“It was just a blessing for us,” David Trujillo said. “When he got sick, things kind of fell apart. I was always worried about him because I knew he liked sports and he liked soccer.”
Gabe was 14 years old when he got sick and lost his ability to move his arms and legs. Years later in college, he discovered the sport of power soccer. Now he and David are devoted to keeping the sport going.
“There’s no poor me in this,” David said. "And that’s the other thing, I don’t think anyone out here feels that way about themselves."
“These are athletes that play to win games, play to win medals, play to win championships just like every able-bodied athlete out there,” Gabe said. “It’s not just for athletes with disabilities, those who love soccer will fall in love with this sport as a spectator.”
“It’s just as exciting whether you’re watching the Phoenix Rising out there playing or whether you’re watching the Arizona Heat on the court, it’s just as invigorating. It’s shown me athletes come in all shapes and sizes.”