The last year has been a year of firsts for Brent Heslehurst: He was chosen to represent Australia for the first time at a Special Olympics World Winter Games and he welcomed his first child with his wife, Emily.
Brent and Emily are both Special Olympics athletes, who dated for many years. They were teammates during the 2013 Asia-Pacific Regional Games and married in 2014. Their success and life together is beyond what Brent’s family could have imagined when he was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome at age 4.
Though Emily won’t be at the Games in Austria, she’ll be cheering him from afar as best she can. These are Brent's first World Winter Games, but he’s competed on the world stage before – in the World Summer Games in 2003 and 2011.
He's determined to bring back a new medal to show baby Daniel.
“I’m proud to be representing my country at the highest level and I am going to do my best," he says. "I hope that others with disabilities get the opportunities I've been given."