BEIJING – Paralympic alpine skiing teammates Danelle Umstead and Tyler Carter have been selected as the U.S. flag bearers for the Opening Ceremony of the Paralympic Winter Games Beijing 2022.
Umstead, a four-time Paralympian, and Carter, a three-time Paralympian, were selected by a majority vote from fellow Team USA athletes to lead the 67-member delegation. Umstead will be joined by husband Rob who also acts as her guide.
The Opening Ceremony will be held Friday, March 4 at the National Stadium, where 43 athletes and two guides are set to walk in the event serving as the official start to the Paralympic Winter Games.
Umstead made her Paralympic debut at the Paralympic Winter Games Vancouver 2010 where she took home double bronze in the women’s visually impaired class after standout performances in the downhill and super-combined events. Umstead secured her third career medal with a third-place finish at the Paralympic Winter Games Sochi 2014.
The only married couple on the team, Danelle and Rob Umstead have been competitively skiing together since 2008. Umstead is one of three four-time Paralympians on the 2022 U.S. Winter Paralympic Team.
“I was completely surprised,” said Umstead on being selected by her fellow U.S. teammates. “They did a beautiful thing, and they had my husband tell me. Everything I have done, he has been by my side. He is so proud. This is such an honor, and I was completely shocked.”
Four years after witnessing the Paralympic Winter Games as a fan in Vancouver, Carter made his debut at the Paralympic Winter Games Sochi 2014 where he took home the 19th best finish in the men’s slalom standing class. He returned to the world’s biggest stage in PyeongChang 2018 with a 27th place finish in the giant slalom. Carter recently served as the Team USA athlete service coordinator for the Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 and currently works for the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Museum.
“I called my dad right away when I found out, and he was over the moon excited,” Carter said. “I was crying when I was telling him. This is a really cool way to end my athletic career and Games experience.”
"Getting to carry the flag alongside Danelle is a huge honor,” Carter continued. “I lived with her for a few months when I was young in my career. She mentored me, and we became best friends. To be able to walk alongside her [and] represent our whole country and the team, I can’t think of anyone better to be sharing that moment with.”
According to the IPC protocol and determined by the host country’s language, Belgium will be the first country to march with the United States entering the stadium as the 29th country in the lineup. The parade of nations will be closed out by host country People’s Republic of China.
The Opening Ceremony will be shown live on USA Network and Peacock from 7 – 9 a.m. ET on March 4. Presented by Toyota, NBCUniversal will showcase unprecedented coverage of the Paralympic Winter Games including more than 230+ hours of programming, 120 of which being television coverage, across NBC, USA Network, the Olympic Channel and Peacock. All events will stream live on Peacock.
Team USA fans can follow the 2022 U.S. Paralympic Team at TeamUSA.org and across Team USA’s social channels on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok and YouTube. The U.S. Paralympic Team microsite will offer Team USA results from the Paralympic Winter Games, as well as athlete biographies, sport previews, a history book, and facts and figures about the U.S. delegation.