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250 Marines, Veterans Train For Annual Trials At Camp Pendleton

Photo caption:

Photo credit: Wounded Warrior Regiment

A Marine is pictured playing basketball while in a wheelchair in this undated photo.

About 250 Marines and veterans are training for the 5th annual Marine Corps Trials at Camp Pendleton.

The competition — which features eight sports including wheelchair basketball, track and field, sitting-volleyball and swimming — is hosted by the Marine Corps Wounded Warrior Regiment.

Participants are veterans and Marines who were injured in or out of combat. The goal of the competition is to give wounded service members a chance to further their physical and mental rehabilitation, said organizers.

Gunnery Sgt. Gabriel Guest lost his leg from injuries sustained in an IED attack while serving in Helmand Province, Afghanistan in 2008. He said preparing for the trials has made him physically and mentally stronger.

“The biggest thing, from my personal standpoint, is learning from the guys who have already done a lot of this process, seeing how they do things,” Guest said. “I’m just happy to be around these guys. They’re all inspirational and they help me out.”

Two teams of active-duty Marines, a veterans team and a team formed from international allies will compete against each other in the games.

The event runs through March 11 and is opened to members of the public who bring a valid driver's license and car registration.

For more information, go to woundedwarriorregiment.org.

Chris Chan is a freelance multimedia reporter. Contact him on Facebook: facebook.com/chrischanmedia; Twitter: @chrischansd

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