Race of a Lifetime CaseyKammel

$5,402 of $20,000 goal

Raised by 56 people in 49 months

CASEY TO KONA, Ironman 20 Years in the Making

"You will never walk again."
20 years ago, I broke my neck and heard this devastating news.

I'm Casey Kammel, a personal trainer by trade, Ironman by choice. After I broke my neck IN HAWAII on vacation and was confined to a wheelchair, I thought life was over. But it wasn't. Instead, it was a new beginning. I had to re-learn basic daily functions like brushing my teeth, getting dressed and learning to walk again. 

In 1994, my vacation ended tragically when I hit my head on the bottom of a swimming pool and crushed my C4 vertebrate. I was immediately paralyzed from my neck down. 

Enduring extensive surgery, the doctors used my hip bone to create a new vertebrae fusion in my neck. They screwed a steel halo into my skull attached to a non-removable body brace. I felt like a prisoner in my own body. I couldn't move. I would just stare at the ceiling for hours. This was a dark time. 

During my 2 months in the hospital, I endured intense therapy and began to regain movement. Within 3 months I was up and walking with a 4-pronged cane. By 5 months, I set the cane down and never looked back. 

I FALL ALMOST DAILY, but I GET BACK UP.  You can too! I'm still partially paralyzed on my entire right side, and my hand is closed like a fist. I deal with issues no one knows about, but it doesn't stop me. FOR ONE DAY, try to tie your shoes with one hand. For me, it's EVERYDAY. But I keep going.

I have worked long and tirelessly, and have proven the doctors wrong. I am now proud to be a competitive PHYSICALLY CHALLENGED ATHLETE!! Without hesitation, I push through with a perseverance I never could have imagined. And now....I'm
on my way to Kona Ironman Oct. 11, 2014! My Holy Grail of races!

CASEY TO KONA, Ironman 20 Years in the Making!!! I broke my neck in 1994 a swimming pool in Hawaii, now I have the CHANCE OF A LIFETIME to return to the islands that changed my life forever.

I NEED TO RAISE $50,000 to get to KONA. I'm honored to do this for fellow challenged athletes! The funds are being raised for CAF and a very small portion for athletic expenses. 

My wife Lisa (then my girlfriend) pulled me up from the bottom of the pool. She stood by my side regardless of the outcome. She went through the daily pain and suffering of recovery with me.

And now, our two daughters support me for who I am, regardless of my disabilities. I want my kids to be motivated to be better and stronger and never quit no matter what they do! 

THANK YOU ALL, for the love and support! I would not be the person I am today without the unwavering dedication of my family, my clients, and my community! 



The Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF)
raises money to help people with physical challenges pursue an active lifestyle through physical fitness and athletics. CAF’s mission is clear: give those with the desire to live active, competitive lifestyles every opportunity to compete in the sports they love.

By making a donation towards my fundraising goal you will provide individuals with physical challenges the tools necessary to find success in sports — and in life!

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Challenged Athletes Foundation Ironman Kona athletes! I'm humbled at your generosity to raise almost $45,000 to grant money to these fearless competitors! Gerald from Germany, Mohammed from Morocco, Ricky James from USA, and so many more!

Share this link to support these athletes whose hearts are as big as their dreams. #caseytokona
CAF Ironman Kona Athletes, so inspiring!
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Bib number? CHECK! Turning in my gear now, waiting anxiously for 3 am wake up call. Giddy Up!!!
My Kona Bib #156. Ironman.com
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Wow, knowing we've raised almost $45,000 for Challenged Athletes Foundation, I'm at a loss for words. I'm humbled here in Kona by the enormity of this race. I've met fellow challenged athletes and am proud to stand by their side. THANK YOU all for your support. Saturday is race day!

PLEASE share this link so we can reach our goal for these unstoppable ELITE ATHLETES!

And while I was out training, look who my girls met! After hearing my story, he wrote these words of inspiration. Wow, amazing! Apolo Ohno, Olympic Athlete competing in Kona!
CAF athlete Gerald from Germany!
Apolo Ohno is racing too!
Apolo Ohno wrote me this note, crazy!
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I guess my kids are excited too! Lisa caught our 9 year old putting it on her calendar. It's getting close and my girls are two of my biggest fans!
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Read a Previous Update
Alisa McCormick
49 months ago

So proud of you my friend! You are an inspiration.

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Lisa Kammel
49 months ago

You are on your way Casey! Your training is dialed in and you WILL get to Kona!

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$5,402 of $20,000 goal

Raised by 56 people in 49 months
Created September 10, 2014
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CT
$52
Charles Tentindo
48 months ago

Good luck Casey. Show the world what you're made of! I know you will.

SB
$250
Steve & Johnna Bryant
48 months ago

Go Casey! So proud of you & honored to support you and the Challenged Athlete's Foundation!

CD
$50
Colby and Brenda Durnin
48 months ago

Such an inspirational journey to watch!

SH
$100
Steve Howerton
48 months ago

"Pain is only temporary. Quitting lasts a lifetime." Casey Kammel

PW
$100
Parks Wesson
48 months ago

Good job Casey!

RH
$100
Randal Hernandez
48 months ago

Do it Casey! You're an inspiration!

TF
$50
The Schlom Family
48 months ago

We are touched moved and inspired by you and your goals Casey! Keep up the great work!

SW
$25
Suzy Wren
48 months ago

As the girls say before beam- "you've got this Casey." Best wishes tomorrow!

Alisa McCormick
49 months ago

So proud of you my friend! You are an inspiration.

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Lisa Kammel
49 months ago

You are on your way Casey! Your training is dialed in and you WILL get to Kona!

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