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17946-Cody McCasland photo

Cody McCasland

Swimming

Biography

Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Limb deficiency
Origin of Impairment
Congenital
Classification
S8, SB6, SM8

Further personal information

Residence
Keller, TX, USA
Occupation
Student
Languages
English

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He began swimming as a baby and started competing at age five.
Why this sport?
His mother enrolled him in 'Mommy and Me' swim classes in the United States of America. "That's where I fell in love with the water."
Club / Team
Lakeside Aquatic Club: Keller, TX, USA
Name of coach
Jason Walter [club]
Training Regime
"I wake up at 5am for [swimming] practice, return home to get ready for school, go to school and come home about 4pm and then go to practice again. That's my day to day life."

General interest

Hobbies
Running, handcycling, triathlons. (Facebook page, 12 Dec 2018)
Most influential person in career
His parents, and US Para athlete Rudy Garcia-Tolson. (sportsnspokes.com, 27 Jun 2018)
Hero / Idol
US swimmer Michael Phelps. (huffingtonpost.com, 27 Apr 2016)
Injuries
In April 2019 he underwent back surgery which took several months to recover from due to post-operative infections and follow-up surgeries. (Twitter profile, 18 Jul 2019)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"I always have goals in mind before I go to a swim meet. Before I even walk onto the pool deck or even get wet, I'm already thinking in my head what I'm going to do at this meet - I want to drop a second in this race or I want to drop a second in that race. I want to go as hard as I can. That type of thinking." (sportsnspokes.com, 27 Jun 2018)
Ambitions
To compete at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. (sportsnspokes.com, 27 Jun 2018; huffingtonpost.com, 27 Apr 2016; inspiremore.com, 18 Jul 2019)
Impairment
He was born with sacral agenesis, which causes damage to the spine. He has had more than 30 operations since birth, and both of his legs were amputated above the knee when he was age 15 months. (huffingtonpost.com, 27 Apr 2016; inspiremykids.com, 09 Mar 2013; TeamCody - Cody McCasland YouTube channel, 25 Apr 2018; sportsnspokes.com, 27 Jun 2018 )
Other information
2019 SURGERIES
In April 2019 he underwent surgery to fix a possible tethered spinal cord, which required multiple stays in hospital due to recurring infections. He recovered by July and said the operation was a success. In mid-July he underwent another procedure, known as a fecal microbiota [stool] transplant, to treat an infection [C-diff] of the colon. (Twitter profile, 18 Jul 2019)

FUTURE CAREER
Outside of sport he wants to become an anaesthesiologist, after being inspired by his experiences in hospitals. "After having over 30 surgeries in my life, and all the hospitals and doctors I've been around, it [medical profession] basically pulls you into the career path. Amy Ho, my anaesthesiologist, was probably my inspiration into the field." (sportsnspokes.com, 27 Jun 2018)

OTHER ACTIVITIES
He has made appearances on US television programmes including the Ellen DeGeneres Show and Oprah. He has also visited wounded soldiers at military hospitals, and raised over 100,000 USD for the Challenged Athletes Foundation. (kintera.org, 31 Oct 2013; union-bulletin.com, 15 Aug 2013)