2008: SECOND PLACE, SLALOM - THE HARTFORD SKI SPECTACULAR, BRECKENRIDGE, COLORADO  •  2006: SIXTH PLACE, SLALOM; SEVENTH PLACE SUPER G; NINTH PLACE, DOWNHILL - PARALYMPIC WINTER GAMES, TORINO, ITALY  •  2005: BRONZE MEDAL, DOWNHILL, SUPER G, GIANT SLALOM, SLALOM - U.S. CHAMPIONSHIPS  •  2005: TWO TOP-10 FINISHES IN WORLD CUP COMPETITION
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Elitsa Storey

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Personal Quotes
I would like to set an image for other women and girls. That whatever they want to do they can do it if they really try.
Personal Info

Born On:  December 26, 1987
Hometown:  Bulgaria and Sun Valley, Idaho
Resides:  Winter Park, Colorado
Height:  5' 3

Biography

As an 18 year old high school student, Elitsa Storey made her Paralympic Winter Games debut in Torino in 2006 and notched three top-10 finishes.  Storey is now about to wrap up her associate's degree so she can put all her focus and energy into preparing for the 2010 Games in Vancouver.

Finding Her Home

Storey spent the first five years of her life in an orphanage in Bulgaria. In 1989, Janis Storey had come in contact with a woman at a local pool who had recently adopted a child. The idea surfaced of adopting a disabled child, and after careful consideration, Janis and her husband, Gary, decided that they wanted to provide a new life for an disabled child. With the choice of a younger and older child, the Storey family selected Elitsa, the older of the two, to join their family of five. The adoption process took a few years to develop; however it kept moving forward. Shortly before her fiftth birthday, the Storey family picked up Elitsa in Seattle and brought her home.

Elitsa's physical disabilities provided the family with many hard decisions and challenges, including the decision to amputate her leg at the age of six. Despite the surgeries and the physical deformities that she had to face, it was Elitsa's vibrant personality that drew people to her. Janis said her daughter had a personality "as subtle as a lion." Determined to fit in, Elitsa learned English in just three months.

Elitsa has become the embodiment of dedication and persistance, sharing her story with companies and universities throughout the country. She speaks not only to the hardships that she has been faced with, but also to the courage and determination that have led her on the path she is taking.

The Start of A Skiing Career

Being raised by a family of avid skiers, the sport would come naturally to Elitsa. She began taking lessons from the now-director of Sun Valley Adaptive Sports, who quickly realized her ability. When Elitsa was only eight, he was convinced that she would be on the National Team. She joined her brothers on the able-bodied Sun Valley Ski Team when she was nine years old. She competed in her first disabled race at age 12, and decided that she had found her niche. She became one of the youngest members ever named to the U.S. Disalbed Ski Team. Five years later at the 2005 U.S. Disabled Alpine Championships, Storey placed third in all four disciplines—downhill, slalom, giant slalom and super G.

Despite her physical challenges, Storey has made her name as a top US Disabled Ski Team Member and looks forward to representing her country in Vancouver.