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Endeavor Games: Chance meeting changes wheelchair racer's life

An ordinary visit to the Edmond Farmer’s Market almost seven years ago changed the life of Alexa Halko
by Ed Godfrey Published: June 8, 2014
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photo - Alexa Halko competes in the UCO Endeavor Games at the Edmond North High School School track, Saturday, June 7, 2014. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
Alexa Halko competes in the UCO Endeavor Games at the Edmond North High School School track, Saturday, June 7, 2014. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman

An ordinary visit to the Edmond Farmer’s Market almost seven years ago changed the life of Alexa Halko.

It was on that day that a person with the Greater Oklahoma Disabled Sports Association noticed Alexa’s disability and approached her and her mother, Elesha, and invited them to be a part of the group that promotes athletic opportunities for the physically challenged.

That moment started the then 7-year-old on a journey that in August will include a trip to England to compete in the World Junior Games.

Alexa, 13, who has cerebral palsy, is a wheelchair racer who keeps getting faster.

The Edmond teen set two American wheelchair racing records for people with cerebral palsy in April at the Mt. SAC Relays in California.

“The second she got in a wheelchair (to race) she loved it, and she never looked back,” Elesha Halko said.

During the weekend Endeavor Games in Edmond, Alexa competed in five different races on the Edmond North High School track and also threw the shot put, javelin and discus in the field events.

She won all eight of the track and field events she entered. She also swam and participated in wheelchair basketball during the four days of the Endeavor Games, which concluded Sunday.

“She loves competing,” Elesha said. “She loves racing. She loves going fast. She loves to shine.”

Alexa shines on the track, where she and Shad Isaac of Oklahoma City, a multi-time champion in wheelchair racing, have a friendly rivalry.

“He has been a great inspiration to me, and he’s pushed me to do a lot,” said Alexa, who attended Sequoyah Middle School in Edmond.

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by Ed Godfrey
Copy Editor, Outdoors Editor, Rodeo, River Sports Reporter
Ed Godfrey was born in Muskogee and raised in Stigler. He has worked at The Oklahoman for 25 years. During that time, he has worked a myriad of beats for The Oklahoman including both the federal and county courthouse in Oklahoma City for more...
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