In track and field, relay races are one of the most highly anticipated events. Comprised of four runners (legs), they each must seamlessly pass the baton within the exchange zone to insure the last leg crosses the finish line for the win. Counting steps for the exchange zone is imperative. Practicing the baton release requires a rhythm: 1, 2, 3 … STICK. 1, 2, 3 … STICK! In the same way that relay runners pass the baton, two Liberian athletes have made the bold decision to pass the baton to aspiring athletes in Liberia.
Liberian Sprinter Phobay Kutu-Akoi.
Liberian Heptathlete Maya Neal (Image taken from IL.Milesplit.com).
Let’s discuss one of my favorite seasons — the Olympics. This festive event combines the cheerfulness of Christmas with the anticipation of a Leap Year. Who doesn’t love it? It’s the one time that countries can put on a united front, regardless of internal conflicts. We can applaud and celebrate the best athletes that we have to offer. After all, just qualifying to compete in an Olympic event is an amazing achievement. Watching our lone star and solid stripes march under the flames of the Olympic torch symbolizes our worth. It means that we are good enough. We are strong enough. Despite all of our inadequacies, we can run with the best of them.
When I heard that Liberia would compete in a sport other than Track and Field, at the 2012 Olympic Games, I was ecstatic. Liberia has talented runners, but a Liberian Judo fighter signified Liberia’s progress. It meant that we were developing other passions and skills among Liberian youths. It meant that my dreams of transforming Snake Babies into Olympic Gymnasts and Kru Fishermen into Olympic Rowers could actually happen. But I might have jumped the gun because the young fighter chosen to represent Liberia— Levi Saryee — was nothing more than a martial con artist.
The Road to Rio is looking good for Liberia. We haven’t had a boxer at the Olympic games, since Seoul Korea in ’88.Has Liberia finally found its Olympic boxing medalist? Here is a closer look at Liberian boxer Archie Weah, through a series of memes.
ONE FULL YEAR has already passed and the next Olympic Game is just THREE YEARS away. Time is flying, but it’s never too early to start preparing. Click Here or copy and paste the link to a very brief article on Liberia’s Boxers as they prepare to qualify for the 2016 games…ENJOY!
Liberia’s time in London has passed, as far as the Olympics are concerned. However, I can’t help, but share this beautiful piece of Liberian/British history…. Click the “Friday Cartoon” link to read the story. Enjoy and stay Tuned!!!
Below is an exclusive interview with, Liberia’s Power Lifter, James “Bobby the Big Siaffa.” Thanks to everyone who showed support by viewing this page and leaving comments for each athlete. Ciao, Until Next Time; Be Inspired, Be Curious, Be Blessed.
1. How did you get to the 2012 London Summer Paralympic Games? (What was the process, what steps did you have to take to become Liberia’s 1st ever Summer Paralympian?
A: My first international competition was in Dubai March 2010 I lifted 130kg/286. Then in July I was invited to the world championship in Malaysia where I lifted 175kg/385lbs. That qualified me for the Paralympics Solidarity training program. Where I attended training camp for 2 months in Cardiff, Whales.
On September 4th 2012, Liberia made its FIRST EVER Summer Paralympic appearance. James “Bobby the Big”Siaffa represented Liberia in the 2012 London Summer Paralympic 82.5 kg Power Lifting competition and placed 7th out of 14competitors. Siaffa met his goal of placing in the Top Ten by lifting 190kg/419 lbs! This is an AMAZING debut for Liberia. Siaffa gave a remarkable performance. The competition concluded with Ireland placing First, China– Second, and Egypt– Third.
Below are some images from the competition. Once again, Congratulations Bobby for making it this far. May you have many blessings toward your continued success.
Yesterday August 29th marked the Opening of the 2012 London Summer Paralympic Games. This is also Liberia’s FIRST appearance in a Summer Paralympic Game. You can watch the Ceremony by CLICKING HERE; Liberia enters at 1:32:49. James “Bobby the Big” Siaffa served as the Flag Bearer and will be making history as Liberia’s FIRST athlete to qualify to compete in a Summer Paralympic Game. Cheer him on as he represents Dear Liberia on Tuesday September 4th. ParalympicSports TV will be airing all competitions LIVE; CLICK HERE to watch.
The Games have finally begun and some countries have already started raking in medals. Visit the OFFICIAL LONDON PARALYMPIC SITE to see which countries are leading. THREE African countries have received medals, so far (Nigeria*1 gold*, Algeria *2 bronze*, Egypt*1 bronze*)
Below are more images from the Welcoming Ceremony, ENJOY!!!
With LESS then 24 hours until the 2012 London Summer Paralympic Gamesbegin, Liberia’s Paralympic Committee and athlete are welcomed into London’s Olympic Village. Today, Liberia and London exchanged gifts in honor of the 2012 Games. This is a BIG year for Liberia; Power Lifter, James Bobby “The Big” Siaffa, will be making HISTORY as the FIRST athlete to ever represent the country at a Paralympic Game. Siaffa entered the village with Coach Nagbe of Monrovia and Liberian Paralympic Committee Members. Bobby “The Big” is scheduled to compete on Tuesday September 4thin the Power Lifting Competition. This leaves SEVEN days until Liberia makes its debut in the Paralympics. The Opening Ceremony of this year’s game begins tomorrow August 29th; wish our representative well as he makes history for Our Dear Nation.
Feel free to revisit this page for images of the Welcoming Ceremony. Below are some photos of Bobby the Big and Committee Members.
The flames of the 2012 London Summer Olympics have been extinguished and most of the participants have returned to their origins. However; the GAMES are NOT over yet! With only 2 weeks until the 2012 PARALYMPIC flames ignite, symbolizing the start of the 2012 Paralympic Games, let’s take a moment to welcome JAMES “BOBBY the BIG” SIAFFA to the World Stage.
SIAFFA is a Liberian Powerlifter. He will be making History as the FIRST Liberian to compete in the Paralympics. The Paralympics is an international sports competition for extraordinary athletes with physical disabilities. The name “Para”lympic is used to express the game’s parallel format to the Olympics. Powerlifting is the ULTIMATE test of upper body strength, pushing athletes to lift over THREE times their bodyweight in some cases. SIAFFA’s recent lift of 170kg/374lbs, at the World Paralympics Powerlifting Championship in Malaysia, qualified him to represent Liberia in the 2012 London Games.
“Despite my disability it has always been my dream to represent Liberia on the International stage. My goals include being ranked as one of the top Paralympics power lifters in the world, and finishing among the top-10 at the 2012 Summer Paralympics Games.”
As Siaffa prepares to make his dream a reality, let’s cheer him and Liberia on. You can leave a comment for Siaffa by Clicking Here. You can view the Paralympic Games from August 29th- September 9th by Clicking Here. In the mean time the site will be updated with more info and images on Liberia’s FIRST Paralympian James “Bobby the Big” Siaffa.