Lori Bockserman’s class at McKevett School heard from a very inspirational speaker Wednesday, Anthony Pedeferri. Above, Pedfeferri speaks to the class.

Students at McKevett School
December 18, 2015

Santa Paula News

Lori Bockserman’s class at McKevett School heard from a very inspirational speaker Wednesday.

In December 2007 Anthony Pedeferri had been an officer with the California Highway Patrol for over 12 years when he was struck by a vehicle while conducting a traffic stop on the 101 Freeway.  After 8 months in the hospital, he emerged as a C7/8 quadriplegic.  

Prior to the accident, he was former Category 1 road cyclist, Category 2 track cyclist, and an accomplished Ironman triathlete, having competed three times in the Ironman World Championship in Hawaii. He attempted handcycling while in rehabilitation in Colorado. After a discouraging start, he progressed and began racing in 2010. Anthony has won several races, including the 2011 US National Road Race and 2012 US National Criterium Road Race, and Time Trial championships in the H1 division. He told the McKevett students, “You either sit around and do nothing or you do something.”

As a Paralympic athlete he participated as a member of the 2012 US Paralympic Cycling Team, competing in London, where he placed 4th and 5th in the time trial and road race, respectively. Anthony finished 2012 ranked 8th in the UCI World Points rankings. 2013 Anthony rode a reduced race schedule, but still managed several wins and finished 11th in the UCI World Points rankings. In 2014, Anthony finished 3rd in the National TT and RR in the H2 division (formerly H1), and finished 9th in the UCI World Championship road race. 

During his visit to McKevett he showed the students videos of various adaptive sports and answered numerous questions from the children. Afterwards he took them outside and showed them his handcycle.

Bockserman said she contacted Pedeferri through his design shop website.  “Years ago our paths crossed when he was getting a handcycle at a Ventura triathlon store (he wouldn’t remember, we didn’t meet),” she said.  “Then last month he spoke at my daughter’s high school about drunk and distracted driving.   My students had been reading, researching, and writing about how athletes with disabilities continue their sport but with adaptations, and it occurred to me that his presentation would be of great interest to them, and they could also learn about other sports.  

All week long students have been looking forward to his visit, compiling questions for him and making predictions about the equipment he’d bring. He literally brought to life what they’d read about in their textbooks.   I thought it was a fantastic experience for all of us to listen to his story and hear about how he has continued to do all the things he enjoys, just in a different way. Very inspirational.”

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