John Vcelka- High Roller #9


When people are just sitting around being bored…bad things can happen! But sometimes, GREAT things can happen. That was the case when a few friends decided to gather for an afternoon of handcycling. Handcycling led to more handcycling which led to more people joining in and then planning different activities like kayaking, shooting classes, tennis and more.

John Vcelka was injured 7 years ago in a skiing accident. It became very important for him to stay active and surround himself with others having similar abilities. He found that they motivated each other to get out and try something new.

John created his dream job when he started SportsAbilities. The website keeps people informed of events happening in their area. At first the website shared events and resources in the states of Colorado and Illinois and has quickly grown to over 833 pages sharing information in all 50 states!

With the support of large corporations and partnerships with local organizations SportsAbilities is able host and support some fantastic events that bring people together to try new things. John is a man of many talents- when he’s not doing something sporty you may find him doing some arts and crafts! Kudos for all you do John!

Age: 42

Occupation: Director of Vital Information for

Injury Level: T7 Paraplegic

Status (single, married, etc.): Single

Siblings: Had 2 sisters but only have one left

Children: One daughter- Shelby

Hometown: Zion, Illinois

Current  residence: Highlands Ranch, Colorado

Education/Degrees: Bachelors of Business Adminstration- Marketing

Do you have a mentor? Who? Why? I have a very tight knit group of friends that I draw off of for different situations

Favorite band/kind of music/musician I listen to many types.  Everything from Country to Gangsta Rap

Favorite films? I love High Action Movies

Favorite magazines? Robb Report

Favorite restaurant/food? Portillos, Lou Malnatti’s, Tokyo Joes.

Favorite beverage? Pepsi and Iced Tea

Favorite websites?

Who do you live with? Solo

Do you own a car? What make? I have a Mini Cooper and an Audi A4 Avant

Where did you go on your last vacation? Illinois

Do you have a pet? What? Shiba Inu/Chow Mix-Samurai

Do you have your own website? Yes, (that’s why it’s his favorite)

Do you go out much? Where? How often? With whom? I frequently go out to advocate and volunteer at Craig Hospital and other local organizations who put on sporting activities for people with disabilities

What’s your dream job? Precisely what I am doing right now.

Do you work out or play any sports? I do a ton of sports.  W/C Tennis, Table Tennis, Handcycling, Mountain Biking, and Shooting are the ones I do most often

Hobbies? Washing my cars

Hidden talents? I can paint and do arts and crafts

What irritates you? People who drive dirty cars and use their windshield washers in front of me

What do you consider awesome? Convincing someone that they can accomplish something when they do not feel it is possible and then seeing them do it.  The smile on their face is the most awesome thing in the world.

Where would you love to live? Vancouver, BC

Anything else you want to add? Having a peer invite you to go to an event makes a big difference, you are more likely to go.

Also, it’s important to get people to try something. There’s a lot of fear. Try to break down that fear and start getting active. You’ll be happier!


John- We agree with you! BACKBONES grab a friend and get out there! Get active!

Visit SportsAbilities



  1. Annie
    August 30, 2012

    I met him. He is awesome!

  2. 180 Medical
    November 27, 2012

    Great guy and is a great resource!

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