DENVER — Pam Wilson is easily one of the sweetest people you will come across.
Coupled with her sweetness is her fierce competitiveness.
“I’m pretty competitive to begin with," Wilson said. "I mean that’s what drives me to training here five of six times a week."
The Denver native is a constant at the Denver Curling Club. A wheelchair Pan American athlete in the past, Wilson went to medical school and wound up working at Children’s Hospital in Denver as a physician. She started looking for a new athletic challenge and in 2010, she found it.
Video above: Denver curler Pam Wilson chasing Paralympic dreams, aired May 24, 2021.
“So I was looking at options, curling came up, I tried it, it was fantastic and have been doing it ever since,” she said. “There’s this comradery with it, you play with the teams, the teams you’re playing against when you’re done, there’s this certain brotherhood that you really develop with all these curlers.”
After years of training, Wilson was chosen to be on Team USA’s Wheelchair Curling team, traveling around the country and world, competing with and against the best of the best.
“Unbelievable. It’s just an amazing feeling," she said. "First off, you work really hard. It’s one of these things that I set my goals on achieving that. The first time I got my USA jacket and it was delivered to my home, it’s an unbelievable feeling. It’s something that is very hard to express in words."
It was all part of an even larger dream.
“Making a Paralympic team is my Mount Everest," she said last summer. "It’s one of those things where if you really want to train hard to climb Everest, you work at it. If you really want to train hard to make a Paralympic team, you do the same thing. It’s unbelievable to wear that USA on my back."
She has now achieved that dream of representing Team USA at the 2022 Winter Paralympic Games in Beijing.
In the runup to the Games, she was one of five active members on the mixed squad. Her Paralympic Games teammates include Matthew Thums, Steve Emt, David Samsa and Oyuna Uranchimeg.
“We’re one big family. The first game I played in worlds, I was pretty nervous. But you know, you’ve got to give it your all," she sad.
In April, they won gold at the Wheelchair B Curling Championships, which was a step closer to qualifying for the Paralympic Games. The next step was to rank in the top seven at the 2021 World Championships in October, which they did with a fourth place finish.
“We have a goal and our goal is to make it to the Paralympics," Wilson said last summer. "All I can imagine is, it’s the Everest that I want to climb."
This story originally was published on May 24, 2021.
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