After three decades of dealing with multiple sclerosis, the military veteran lives today with progressive M.S., a debilitating disease with no cure. Four years after hearing, ‘You aren’t going to get better’ this 51-year old single mom of two spent the last 24 months hanging on to life by the string of her bow and arrow.
“If I am going in, I am all the way because I am an American,” Coryell said. “That is what we do.”
Nearly two years ago, before Coryell ever picked up a bow, fate picked her.
While working at UW-Milwaukee to help post 9/11 student vets get on track to finish college, an invite to an adaptive sports clinic alongside Team USA coaches introduced Coryell to archery. There, Coryell found new purpose and a training partner — Sam Tucker.
“Our first goal was to make the national team,” Coryell said. “The second goal was to make the world team. The third goal was to make the Paralympic team and from the start there was no turning back.”
Coryell and Tucker both pushing 50, went for it. They quit their jobs and moved to Colorado to train full time.
“We did not have furniture, we were sleeping on blow up cots. We just went there to shoot archery.”
The gamble worked. In 2015, Coryell became the first W1 female ever to qualify for the U.S. Para Archery Team. She now competes around the world and next month heads with Team USA to Rio for the 2016 Paralympic games.
“I have no fear of dying, and now, I am not afraid to live anymore either.”
A benefit will be held Saturday, Aug. 20th to help Coryell on her journey to Rio. It will be at Champions Riverside Resort located at W16751 Pow Wow Lane in Galesville from 3:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m. There will be a silent auction, raffle and more.