CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — When you hear the word disability, many may think of someone who is limited or impaired.
But for a group of Corpus Christi disabled athletes, it's about overcoming, achieving and competing.
Most of all, for those on the Corpus Christi RIMZ basketball team, it's about feeling whole again. The players refuse to let their disability stop them from playing the sports they love.
Each player for Corpus Christi RIMZ has some form of disability - either one they were born with or one that happened later in life. But no matter their disability, it hasn't stopped them from competing in the sports.
"Some people have one leg and some people have no legs," said Eric Shandy, one of three CC RIMZ co-founders. "I have spina bifida, some have cerebral palsy and other forms of disabilities. But we all have a common goal of playing basketball and playing sports and being active that makes it a lot easier."
Chris Evans agrees with Shandy's premise of the importance of CC RMIZ.
"Just because you have a disability doesn't mean you're done," said Evans, another one of the organization's co-founders. "You could still be in the spotlight and still be on the news and you could still come out and do good things and have fun doing it."
The team is part of the National Wheelchair Basketball Association and they pay for all its own travel expenses, tournament fees, uniforms and equipment. They recently filed to become a non-profit organization, which will allow them to accept donations they can claim as tax writeoffs, among other benefits. Most players on a fixed income are receiving only a disability check, so donations go a long way to help them.
"We need as much support as we can get trying to prove to the able-bodied community but just because you're a wheelchair you could still be active and still play a lot of sports and support that's goes a long way," Shandy said.
Suiting up and strapping in means something different for each of them. But one thing they can all agree on, even though they can't control their legs in the real world, when they're on that court they're in control.
And for those moments they're whole again. Just a group of guys going up and down the court playing some basketball.
"Just because you're in a chair or just cause you have a disability doesn't mean your life is over," Evans said. "Our motto is to bring awareness to adaptive sports in the Coastal Bend and that's what we're here for."
CC RIMZ's record for the 2019-2020 season was 9-11.
And after a year off due to the pandemic, they're hoping with the communities support they can do even better this year.
To find out how to donate go to the team's Facebook here.