Live from the 2017 Invictus Games

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Prince Harry poses with the medal winning competitors at the Cycling Time Trial on day 4 of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 on September 26, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. (Samir Hussein/WireImage)

We are thrilled to provide live coverage of the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest on the games, as well as our live blog below.

The 2017 Invictus Games come to an end in Toronto

TORONTO — The 2017 Invictus Games closed with a musical celebration of camaraderie among competitors from 17 nations and the official handover to the 2018 hosts from Sydney, Australia, at the Air Canada Center in Toronto, Sept. 30.

Throughout the week, more than 550 wounded, ill and injured service members from 17 nations competed in 12 sporting events including archery, track and field, cycling, golf, sitting volleyball, swimming, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair basketball Sept. 23 to 30 as they were cheered on by thousands of family members, friends and spectators in the Distillery District in Toronto.

Read the full story here.

Medically retired Air Force Staff Sgt. cleaned up at Invictus Games competition

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Medically retired Air Force Staff Sgt. Sebastiana Lopez-Arellano reacts to winning a gold medal for hand cycling during the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto, Sept. 26, 2017. (DoD photo by EJ Hersom)

TORONTO — When former Air Force volleyball and arena football player medically retired Air Force Staff Sgt. Sebastiana Lopez-Arellano almost died in a motorcycle accident in 2015, she said she never thought she would be able to play sports again.

“I didn’t lose consciousness when I hit the tree. I shattered my femur and my knee. I broke my femur in half and severed my femoral. My leg was flipped upside down,” she said.

After almost dying and sliding into a coma for a month, she woke up to an amputated leg and the knowledge that she was an above-the-knee amputee with quadriplegic hand function. Though she’s had more than 50 lifesaving surgeries and the scars to prove it, she said she doesn’t let them deter her recovery.

“I lost half my body weight; I went from about 160 to 80 pounds so I was struggling with my activities of daily living,” she said.

Her recovery care coordinator at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, Maryland, pushed her to go to an Air Force Wounded Warrior adaptive sports camp.

Read the full story here.

Yes, wheelchair rugby exists and it’s incredible

TORONTO  — The Invictus Games are in full swing and Team USA is looking to defend their wheelchair rugby title on Thursday.

“We’re looking to defend our title. We’re not giving anything up. If a team wants it, they’ve got to come get it from us,” medically retired Marine Corps Sgt. Anthony McDaniel told DoD News.

“We’ve got a solid team. It’s all defense and then we just execute on offense. It’s going to be a lot of fun for everybody,” added McDaniel, who is leading Team USA’s rugby team.

Read the full story here.

Take an up-close look at the 2017 Invictus medals

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A competitor holds up a gold medal during the 2017 Invictus Games. (Photo courtesy of Invictus Games).

TORONTO — As the 2017 Invictus Games comes to an end, hundreds of athletes don their gold, silver, and bronze medals earned from the adaptive sports competition.

British company Cleave – Court Jewellers designed the medals, which feature a yellow ribbon, 13 maple leaves, and the motto “I am the master of my fate.”

The medals for the 2015 and 2016 Invictus Games were designed by British veteran Harry Parker, who was injured while serving in Afghanistan.

According to the Invictus Games, those medals featured “an embossed stitch decoration, which represented the recovery and rehabilitation process of the competitors.”

Read the full story here.

Adorable toddler runs off with dad’s medal at Invictus Games

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Vada DeWalt, 3, daughter of medically retired Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Nate DeWalt, right, runs off with her father’s gold medal during the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto, Canada, Sept. 24, 2017. (DoD photo by EJ Hersom)

TORONTO — The crowd cheered at York-Lions Stadium here as 3-year-old Vada ran out to hug her dad, medically retired Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Nate DeWalt, and ran back to her mom, Erica, with her new “necklace,” an Invictus Games’ gold medal.

DeWalt, who is also the proud father of Vail, 1, said having his family here to watch him compete at his first Invictus Games means everything to him.

“It’s been absolutely incredible to share this experience with my family,” he said with a broad smile, his voice full of emotion.

“I think in the back of my head at the start line, I’m doing this for my children. I told my wife, Erica, I would’ve just been happy leaving here with the experience. The medals were a bonus. To be able to put a medal around my daughter’s neck was just the most incredible feeling I think I’ve ever had.”

DeWalt said families are critical to the recovery process.

“Families are a very critical part in our recovery and that support system. To be able to share that experience with them is hands down the best experience I could ever have.”

Read the full story here.

Prince Harry gives medals after a cycling event on day 4 of Invictus

TORONTO —  Prince Harry was on hand Tuesday morning to personally award cyclists Julie Marcotte of Canada and Team USA’s Laura Mastel and Gabby Graves-Wake.

He hugged and shook the hand of each competitor before heading to the athlete’s area to meet more cyclists in Toronto’s High Park.

This badass Marine was last year’s most decorated competitor at Invictus and she just broke another personal record

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Sarah Rudder (Gold), USA and Sabrina Daulaus (Silver)at finish the Women’s 200 M, IT1/IT2/IT3 Final. (Rick Madonik/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

TORONTO — Medically retired Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Sarah Rudder broke another personal record and took home gold medals in the women’s 100-meter and 200-meter dashes during track and field competition at the 2017 Invictus Games.

Rudder also earned a gold medal in her category in the women’s discus Sept. 24. She earned a gold medal in her category in the women’s shot put Sept. 25.

“It’s been exhausting and nonstop, from six in the morning to 10 at night, but it’s exhilarating. It’s something we need in order to heal. For me, all I wanted to do is accomplish a personal record, whether that got me a gold [medal] or not today. I did it, and I got both so I’m excited,” Rudder said at the York-Lions Stadium here.

Rudder first injured her ankle when she went through the Crucible in boot camp and was recovering when she reinjured it Sept. 11, 2001. She was serving at the Pentagon.

She underwent five surgeries and had cartilage taken from her knee and placed in her ankle. She had metal rods put in, taken out and they made the decision to remove her limb and give her a prosthetic.

Read the full story.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle make first public appearance

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend a Wheelchair Tennis match during the Invictus Games 2017 at Nathan Philips Square on September 25, 2017 in Toronto, Canada (Chris Jackson/Getty Images for the Invictus Games Foundation )

TORONTO — Catching competitors, fans and media off guard, Prince Harry and American actress Meghan Markel walked hand-in-hand into the wheelchair tennis event at the Invictus Games in Toronto on Monday.

The Suits star, who films the show and lives in Toronto, clapped enthusiastically alongside Prince Harry during the game between Australia and New Zealand.

After the game, Prince Harry and Markle took time to shake hands and speak to fans and competitors before exiting the venue.

Read the full story here.

Read the powerful poem behind Prince Harry’s Invictus Games

TORONTO —  The 2017 Invictus Games are in full swing and in the spirit of the games, Toronto is illuminated with the black and gold “I AM” emblem.

The “I AM” logo is inspired by the final two lines of the poem “Invictus” written by English poet William Ernest Henley.
Fittingly, the word “Invictus” in Latin means “unconquered.”

Read the full story here.

FLOTUS to Team USA: ‘Take that fighting spirit and bring home the gold’

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First Lady Melania Trump cheers for the USA team during the opening ceremony of the 2017 Invictus Games at Air Canada Centre on September 23, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. (Chris Jackson/Getty Images for the Invictus Games Foundation )

TORONTO – US first lady Melania Trump is urging Americans competing in an Olympic-style athletic contest to “bring home the gold.”

Nearly 100 athletes are participating in the Invictus Games, a competition for wounded service members and veterans founded by Britain’s Prince Harry.

Mrs. Trump is leading a US delegation to this year’s event, which opens Saturday in Toronto.

At a reception for the American athletes and their families, the first lady wished them good luck but said she knows they won’t need it.

She told them to “take that fighting spirit that I know you have and bring home the gold.”

Read the full story here

Meghan Markle appears at Prince Harry’s Invictus Games

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Meghan Markle watches the opening ceremonies of the Invictus Games in Toronto, Ontario, September 23, 2017.
(GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/Getty Images)

TORONTO — Prince Harry’s girlfriend, American actress Meghan Markle, is sitting in the stands for Saturday’s opening ceremony of Prince Harry’s Invictus Games for wounded veterans.

Markle lives in Toronto, but hadn’t appeared with Harry since he arrived in the city. She recently told Vanity Fair they’re in love.

Read the full story here

Prince Harry’s Invictus Games have officially begun

TORONTO — As more than 550 competitors from 17 nations entered the stadium, the air in the stadium buzzed with the sense that these Games will be an inspiring event for competitors and their families, volunteers and spectators from around the world.

Team Canada, as Host Nation, entered the stadium last and received a standing ovation from the animated crowd.

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The adaptive sports wounded servicemembers and vets will compete in

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Ryan Davies of Great Britain during the Men’s Heavyweight Powerlifting event on Day 4 of the Invictus Games at Olympic Park on September 14, 2014 in London, England. (Scott Heavey/Getty Images for Invictus Games)

WASHINGTON — Approximately 550 competitors from 17 nations will compete in 12 adaptive sports at the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto.

The games will include wheelchair rugby, swimming, sitting volleyball, archery and for the first time ever, golf.

Click the link below to read a description of the adaptive sports that wounded servicemembers and veterans will compete in.

The Invictus Games will kick off on September 23rd and last until September 30th.

Read the full story here. 

Here are all the non-sporting events happening at the Invictus Games

WASHINGTON — Aside from the 12 adaptive sports taking place at nine venues across the city, a variety of new programming is being introduced to help support service members on their road to recovery.

Notable activities include celebrations of faith and culture, connection to employment opportunities, support for friends and family members and educating the public about the sacrifices of service members.

The Invictus Games will kick off on September 23rd and last until September 30th.

Read the full story here. 

FLOTUS is heading to the Invictus Games in first solo foreign trip 

WASHINGTON — The first lady will make the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto her first solo trip abroad.

The international adaptive sports competition, founded by Prince Harry in 2014, was something Melania Trump said should be “lauded and supported worldwide.”

Trump is also slated to meet Prince Harry while attending the games.

Read the full story here. 

Prince Harry will attend Invictus Games in Toronto

WASHINGTON — The Kensington Palace twitter account announced that Prince Henry of Wales will attend the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto.

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Meet the badass USAF pilot amputee who is leading the US at Invictus

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Christy Wise prepares to compete in the event 17, 50-meter breaststroke during the 2016 Invictus Games at Orlando. (Spc. Tracy McKithern/US Army photo)

BETHESDA, Md. — U.S. Air Force Capt. Christy Wise will lead 90 U.S. wounded active duty service members and veterans in this year’s Invictus Games.

Wise lost her leg during a boating accident in April of 2015 and has since competed on the Air Force’s team at the Department of Defense’s Warrior Games.

She will go on to compete in swimming, rowing, as well as track and field events at this year’s Invictus Games in Toronto.

The Invictus Games will kick off on September 23rd and last until September 30th.

Read the full story here.


Here’s the lineup of service members and vets competing at Invictus

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U.S. Army Capt. Kelly Elmlinger takes the lead in a wheelchair race during the 2016 Invictus Games. (EJ Hersom/DoD News)

WASHINGTON — More than 550 wounded, ill and injured servicemen and women from 17 allied nations are expected to compete in the 2017 Invictus Games.

Competitors will participate in 12 adaptive sports, including archery, athletics, indoor rowing, powerlifting, road cycling, sitting volleyball, swimming, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair tennis, wheelchair rugby, and the latest addition to the sports lineup, golf.

The Invictus Games will kick off on September 23rd and last until September 30th.

Read the full story here.

Here comes the Invictus Games …

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Competitors prepare for the UK team trials for the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 ahead of a visit by Prince Harry, Patron of the Invictus Games Foundation, at the University of Bath on April 7, 2017 in Bath, England. (Chris Jackson/ WPA Pool/Getty Images)

BETHESDA, Md. — Wounded active duty service members and veterans from 17 nations will compete at this year’s Invictus Games in Toronto.

The passing of the ceremonial Invictus Games flag from Team USA to Team Canada places the responsibility on Toronto to advance the spirit of the Invictus Games, which began in London in 2014.

Prince Henry of Wales created the Invictus Games after visiting the Department of Defense’s 2013 Warrior Games in Colorado.

After serving 10 years in the British Army, which included two tours on the front lines of Afghanistan, Prince Harry, as he is familiarly known, continues to champion for the military and their families.

The Invictus Games, much like the Warrior Games, organizes adaptive sports competitions to raise awareness and support for wounded military, veterans, and their families.

The Invictus Games will kick off on September 23rd and last until September 30th.

Read the full story here.

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