Mayor John Suthers presented the Spirit of the Springs Inspirational Leader Award to John Register, a U.S. Army veteran and two-time Paralympian, at the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum on Jan. 12. As a member of the U.S. Army World Class Athlete Program, Register learned to embrace a “new normal” after becoming an amputee following a misstep over a hurdle while training for the 1996 Olympic Games. He has since inspired millions of people around the world through his “Hurdling Adversity” speeches and podcasts.
“John Register has proven himself a champion both on and off the field of play,” said Suthers. “Our city is fortunate to have an inspirational leader like John who is positively impacting our local community and people worldwide with his very powerful story of service, sacrifice and resilience. We are honored to present John with a Spirit of the Springs Inspirational Leader Award and thank him for his service to our country and for bringing the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect, and the Paralympic values of determination, inspiration, courage and equality to life here in Olympic City USA.”
A four-time All-American in track and field and graduate of the University of Arkansas, Register served six years in the U.S. Army, including in operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. As a member of the U.S. Army World Class Athlete Program, he won nine gold medals in the Armed Services Competition and two World Military Championship titles. He also won a silver medal in the long jump at the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games. Following his athletic career, Register worked with military athletes through the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee’s Military Sport Program, which he founded in the early 2000s.
A native of Oak Park, Illinois, Register lives in Colorado Springs. In addition to his dedication to the Olympic and Paralympic Movement, Register is acting president and CEO for Amputee Coalition, a Colorado High School Activities Association (CHASA) track and field announcer, and a community advocate for diversity, veterans, amputees, and those living with limb loss or limb difference.
For more on the Spirit of the Springs Awards, visit coloradosprings.gov/spiritofthesprings.