An Inspirational Story Of Brotherly Love & Support Of Olympic Proportions
They first came to the attention of people around the world at the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, and now their inspirational story is touching even more hearts around the world after a gold medal victory at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi.
In 2010, Alex Bilodeau was part of the Canadian National Olympic Team as a contender in the Men’s moguls freestyle skiing competition – a downhill race over bumps of snow with a few aerial jumps thrown in. He won the first gold medal by a Canadian on Canadian soil.
Cheering him on over every bump and through every twist and turn was his older brother Frederic and that’s where their incredible story of mutual support and inspiration first came to light.
Now, four years later, it was front and center again in all the media coverage as Alex fended off competition from teammate Mikael Kingsbury to make history by becoming the first two-time Olympic gold medalist in freestyle skiing. And the very first thing he did after his gold medal run was lift his brother Frederic over the crowd barrier and share a victory embrace with him.
Yet Alex, a three-time World Champion in dual moguls, said his four-year journey to that victory was nothing compared to the struggles of Frederic who has cerebral palsy, and he is in awe of his ability to get the best out of life, despite his difficulties.
His voice filled with emotion, 26 year-old Alex says of his brother, “The motivation that he has, if he had had the chances like I did, he would have been four times Olympic champion. He’s a great inspiration, a great person and he’s going to be an inspiration for me after my career also. Every little thing in life is hard for him, whether it’s going from his seat to go and see me here, walking in the snow, it takes so much energy, it’s very hard. I always complain, and he has every reason in the world to complain and he never does. And why is that? He enjoys life, he takes the best out of it.”
The brothers have also been a team outside the Olympic venue, raising awareness about, and funds for, cerebral palsy research. And it is for the examples of sportsmanship, perseverance, inspiration and compassion that they set individually and together that we name Alex and Frederic Bilodeau Abled.com’s Persons of the Month for February and also for March when the Winter Paralympics are held in Sochi.
And after you watch the following profiles on the brothers, you’ll understand why. The first is from a 2010 documentary from Canada’s CTV Network.