Extreme courage in the face of adversityJune 18, 2008
This is the incredible story of a young man, Dan Buchanan, who was paralyzed in a hang gliding accident but with sheer grit and determination found the resolve to fly again.
In 1981 Buchanan, of Dayton, Nevada, was a young hang glider trying to fly during dangerous weather conditions and thought he could handle the winds. He was wrong and in a shattering crash landing Buchanan was left paralyzed from the waist downward, unable to walk. But he was determined to go hang gliding again, the sport he loved and so after only six months of ‘mending’ he had enough strength in his upper body to get back into the harness of his hanglider. The only adjustment he needed to make was adding wheels at the bottom of the glider in order to land.
“I missed six months of it — that was all,” Buchanan said. “Everyone said, ‘What are you, nuts? It hurt you once, so you’re going to do that again?’ It wasn’t the sport that hurt me; it was the weather I chose to fly in. No one else would have done what I did.”
Since the accident, he won’t go in the air if the winds are stronger than 20 mph but we at xtremesport4u salute the bravery and courage of Dan as a fabulous example of what people can do with their lives even in the moment of crisis – well done Dan.
Dan Buchanan, right, is shuttled to the end of the runway at the Manitowoc County Airport on Saturday while Ray Leonard rides in the launch trailer. Buchanan’s legs were paralyzed after a hang gliding accident in 1981, but that hasn’t stopped him from returning to the skies. Photo by Eric Young/HTR