Paralympics Skier Thomas Walsh Recalls the ‘Pivotal’ Role of Mikaela Shiffrin’s Late Dad in His Fight Against Cancer

Published 03/08/2022, 9:15 AM EST

Every Paralympian has a story of their own and all these stories have one thing in common. They are all inspirational. The US para-alpine skier Thomas Walsh has a similar story as well. He was a champion way before he made his Paralympic debut, but his successful journey to the Paralympics wouldn’t have been possible without the people around him. Friends and family were all he had while growing up through those tough years of his unhealthy teenage life.

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At the age of 14, Thomas was diagnosed with a bone cancer called ‘Ewing’s sarcoma’. The 27-year-old para skier has fought through every life challenge and now is standing at his second Paralympics, representing the USA. In the Beijing Winter Paralympics 2022, he will look to win his first Olympic medal.

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Mikaela Shiffrin’s father played a very crucial role in Thomas Walsh’s treatment

While going through his cancer treatment, Thomas had his best friend, Mikaela Shiffrin, and her family by his side. Especially Mikaela’s father, Jeff, who took care of the boy during his cancer treatment days. He said, “He was a very pivotal part in my treatment and ability to survive.”

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Thomas further added, “He was in the surgical room during probably my biggest operation. He really took extra time to make sure that I was OK, and getting the care and treatment that I needed.”

When Mikaela lost her father in February 2020, it was Thomas’ turn to comfort her, who himself was deeply affected by the news. More than her best friend’s father, he was like a family to the Paralympian and he still remembers him in all his achievements.

Thomas Walsh in Beijing Winter Paralympics 2022

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The major highlight of Thomas Walsh’s career is the two medals at the World Para Alpine Skiing Championship and a Crystal Globe in slalom. However, he is yet to win a Paralympic medal.

Beijing Winter Paralympics 2022 brings the perfect opportunity for the 27-year-old para skier to finish at the podium. He is certainly one of the favorites in the skiing event at the Beijing Paralympics.

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Fans and team USA are eagerly waiting for a Paralympic medal from Thomas Walsh. Let’s see if he can deliver one here in Beijing.

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Saurav Panwar

538 articles

Saurav Panwar is a US Sports writer at EssentiallySports. A postgraduate in Media and Communication Studies, he shares a profound love for creative direction and filmmaking. Saurav is also an avid reader and a literature devotee whose fandom spreads from classics to sci-fi, non-fiction, plays, comics, and much more.

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