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Vets ready to compete in 30th Golden Age Games

July 11,2016 08:27

Jerry Braun from Augusta, Georgia, plays pickleball during the National Veterans Golden Age Games. This week vets can compete in events such as table tennis, racquetball and more at the Cobo Center. (Photo: David Guralnick / The Detroit News)Buy Photo.and more »

TOP TRENDING James David Dickson, The Detroit News 12:22 a.m. EDT July 11, 2016DetroitBuy PhotoBuy PhotoBuy PhotoBuy PhotoBuy PhotoBuy PhotoReplay1 of 62 of 63 of 64 of 65 of 66 of 6AutoplayShow ThumbnailsShow Captions— This week, hundreds of veterans, their family members and about 1,000 volunteers will descend on downtown Detroit for the 30th annual National Veterans Golden Age Games.The veterans will compete in events such as table tennis, cycling and racquetball at Cobo Center and other venues in Detroit. Pride and medals are on the line, they say.Some 870 veterans are slated to compete this week, and 320 of them will take part for the first time. There are seven age categories for the competition, from ages 55 to 85 and up.On Sunday, the focus was not on competition.Southfield-based Irene’s Myomassology Institute provided several therapists-in-training to relieve veterans’ aches. By the time the booth closed, they’d served 97 clients.For Kimberly Morrow, 46, of Livonia the opening day of the Golden Age Games was a chance not only to practice, but bring comfort to veterans, something she hopes to do when she opens her own massage parlor. The stay-at-home mother said she hopes to collaborate with the Veterans Administration’s Hands for Heroes initiative when her business opens.“I would be honored to play a part in relieving the post-traumatic stress veterans face,” Morrow said. “We can’t cure it, but we can help.”In what little time he’d been in Detroit, John Lenhardt, 75, of Team St. Louis described the Motor City as “top notch.”“It’s just so great,” Lenhardt said shortly after touring the RiverWalk.The Vietnam veteran, drafted into the Air Force in 1963, said he’s participated in the Golden Age Games for six years. He planned to compete in several events, including bocce ball, air rifle, shuffleboard and, his two favorites, 9-ball and horseshoes. Team St. Louis brought 21 members to town. Last year, they brought home 17 medals.So far, Detroit’s downtown area exceeded expectations, arrivals said.“I didn’t know what to think before I got here, but it’s very friendly, and the people are great. Things are clean,” Lenhardt said.Read or Share this story: http://detne.ws/29tX9Z6

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