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GM Helps Design 3-Wheel Hand Cycle for Wounded Vet Athletes

GM Helps Design 3-Wheel Hand Cycle for Wounded Vet Athletes

By Jeff Youngs, December 12, 2012
General Motors recently announced that its Chevrolet Division is working with Michigan college engineering students to develop a special 3-wheel cycle operated by the rider using their hands, which will make it easier for injured military veterans to compete in athletic events such as marathon races.

The first prototype model was introduced to spectators during last Saturday's Army-Navy football game* played at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. Retired Marine Corporal Joseph Woodke from Port Hope, MI, rode the new cycle onto the field. He was accompanied by GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson, who also announced that GM intends to build 10 prototypes for the Achilles Freedom Team of Wounded Veterans. These vets participate in marathons across the United States.

The new cycle, which GM claims is stronger, more comfortable, and easier to transport than many current commercial hand cycles, was designed by mechanical engineering students at Michigan Technical University in the Upper Peninsula city of Houghton, MI, as part of a senior project called Huskies Helping Heroes. The project was sponsored by GM. Chevrolet Division engineers helped guide the Michigan Tech students as they worked on a design to meet these vets' special needs.

The Achilles Freedom Team of Wounded Veterans was founded in 2004 by Achilles International as a rehabilitation program to train and sponsor recently wounded servicemen and servicewomen so they can participate in mainstream races across the nation. Besides sponsoring the development of this new hand cycle, GM also underwrites several of the competitions and has supplied cycles that are transported to veterans athletic events in a Chevrolet Silverado HD pickup truck.

*In the 113th meeting between the two teams last Saturday, Navy edged Army 17-13. Navy has now won 11 straight games in the series. With last Saturday's victory, Navy also received the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy in the final game of the season.

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