A former middle school teacher and wrestling coach, Weihenmayer is widely considered one of the most inspirational athletes in the world. Despite losing his vision at age 13, he has become an accomplished mountain/ice/rock climber, skier, acrobatic skydiver, long-distance biker and marathon runner. His motivational speaking career has taken him around the world, sharing the platform with notables including George W. Bush, Rudy Giuliani, Al Gore, Colin Powell and Norman Schwarzkopf.
Click here to view Erik Weihenmayer's website
On Wednesday and Thursday, Weihenmayer will share his story in Rome. He’ll speak publicly at Darlington on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. in the Huffman Athletic Center, and then address middle and upper school students and faculty Thursday morning.
His message of powering through adversity, he said, will be based on his personal experience.
“I’ve been around the world. I’ve had some adventures. I’ve had some success. I’ve had some massive failures,” said Weihenmayer.
He said he wasn’t afraid of going blind so much as his blindness causing him to be pushed to the side and forgotten. He wanted his life to mean something, and so blindness became the catalyst that pushed him into going on adventures and accomplishing things few people can claim to have matched.
Weihenmayer is the author of the book “Touch the Top of the World,” published in 10 countries and six languages. His second book, “The Adversity Advantage: Turning Everyday Struggles Into Everyday Greatness,” was co-authored with best-selling author Dr. Paul Stoltz. He has also been published in Time, Forbes and Reader’s Digest. His award-winning film, “Farther Than the Eye Can See,” was ranked in the Top 20 adventure films of all time by Men’s Journal.
His talk Wednesday evening is free and open to the public.
If you go
What: Speaker Erik Weihenmayer, blind adventurer
When: Wednesday at 6:30 p.m.
Where: A.J. Huffman Athletic Center, Darlington School, 1014 Cave Spring
Cost: Free (and open to public)