LYON, France - Elexis Gillette won a silver medal and U.S. Army veteran Ce-Ce Mazyck added a bronze medal to give United States two medals today at the 2013 International Paralympic Committee Athletics World Championships today in Lyon, France.
On his last attempt, Gillette (Raleigh, N.C.) went from nearly last place in the men's triple jump F11 to second with an American record jump of 12.66m. He has a string of silver medals in his events but has never won gold at the Paralympic Games or world championships.
"It's bittersweet I guess because I'm stuck right there at silver but triple is my lesser of the jumping events," said Gillette. "For today, I was losing terribly until the last one so to be able to get a good jump at the end, that was cool. I'm happy about it."
He scratched the first jump. His second jump was 11.62 with the third attempt at 11.58. Gillette scratched the fourth jump before handing in a 12.07, which still kept him at the bottom of the standings.
"That was close," Gillette said.
Mazyck (Columbia, S.C.) claimed the bronze medal in the women's javelin F57/58 with a throw of 19.83, only two hundredths from a silver medal.
"I felt really, really good today, going out there and competing for Team USA," Mazyck said. "Just getting on the podium was the main thing for me because in London, I kind of missed the mark a little bit. This was a chance for me to redeem myself. I'm so blessed to be on the podium."
Mazyck was injured in November 2003, just prior to Thanksgiving, while doing a parachute jump with the U.S. Army's 82nd Airborne Division.
"It felt awesome to find out I was on the podium," Mazyck said. "Thank you Jesus. I made it on the podium. It felt awesome to do this and to represent Team USA. I came here to do it and I did it."
The first race of the day looked to produce a world title for Kerri Morgan (St. Louis, Mo.) and a bronze medal for Cassie Mitchell (Atlanta, Ga.) but it will be reran Thursday. With 200m remaining in the women's 800m T52, Belgium's Marieke Vervoort and Canada's Michelle Stilwell collided, causing the Belgian to tumble.
Morgan managed to get passed the wreckage and take advantage of the pile up to cross the line first with Mitchell third, but the result will not stand as Vervoort - who won Paralympic 100m T52 gold ahead of Stilwell in London - was deemed to have cut across the Canadian. Vervoort was later disqualified.
In the men's long jump F44, Chief Petty Officer Casey Tibbs (San Antonio, Texas), who became the first active duty service member to represent the United States in a Paralympic Games in 2004, narrowly missed the podium, finishing fourth with a jump of 6.45m. Hurie Johnson (Detroit, Mich.) was fifth with 6.28 while Paul Peterson (Charlotte, N.C.) took sixth with 6.14.
Josh George (Herndon, Va.) led after 2000m of the men's 5000m T54 race but finished fourth overall with a time of 10:26.90.
Brian Siemann (Savoy, Ill.) finished sixth in the men's 200m T53 final, racing a season's best 27.04.
Zena Cole (Oregon, Ohio) threw a 12.58m in the women's clubs F31/32/51.
U.S. Army veteran Jose Nieves (Gurabo, Puerto Rico) finished 13th in the men's javelin throw F54/55/56.
Among the highlights of semifinal action, Tatyana McFadden (Clarksville, Md.) won her heat of the 100m and the 1500m T54, securing her spot in the final of those two events. McFadden, who already has three world championships to her credit this year, is pursuing six gold medals in Lyon.
"My body is tired," McFadden said. "It's hard to do all of these races but the crowd is really pushing me every time I am on the track. I could not ask for a better crowd. They've been so supportive."
Raymond Martin (Jersey City, N.J.) won his semifinal of the men's 200m T52 to keep his hopes alive for five world championships in 2013. Already the owner of three world titles, Martin ran a championship record 31.59.
The 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships, July 19-28, feature more than 1,100 athletes, including 76 Americans, from nearly 100 countries. Live streaming and on demand video is available at www.ParalympicSport.TV while live results are available at www.paralympic.org/events/lyon2013.For more information, please contact Jamie Blanchard, U.S. Paralympics, at 719-237-2179 or firstname.lastname@example.org.